Engaging Kids In Mass
We love that our kids are in Mass with us on Sundays, but it’s always helpful to find tools that help them understand more of what is going on and that support them as they grow in their ability to engage.
Below are three tools This Catholic Family has found that do just that.
1- The Mass Book For Catholic Children, by Jennifer Sharpe.
This guided journal has been very helpful for our six-year-old.
She isn’t yet an advanced reader, but there are many components of the book she can use now, as well as some that she could grow into. I love how both writing and drawing are incorporated. For example, she can write in a prayer intention for the day and also draw a depiction of the gospel reading. Some of Felicity’s other favorite parts are coloring the vestments on the Priest and tallying the number of times “Jesus Christ” is said in Mass. The checklists for preparing to enter Mass and for preparing to leave Mass are also great tools.
Felicity is a very active girl, both in movement and in using her brain. Felicity says The Mass Book for Catholic Children helps her have fun and gives her something to do during Mass, but in a way that also helps her pay attention.
As a teacher, I know many children need concrete tools rather than just observation to help them develop a deep understanding of a concept, event or topic. This book is a great way to help support children as they grow in their understanding of our faith.
2- My Mass Kit
My kids love to play pretend. We have princess costumes, firefighter costumes, builder costumes, and all sorts of tools for imagination fun. Dress up and games of pretend helps them internalize the real world, and find their place in it through play.
Now, they can use this sturdy kit to reenact what they see happening each Mass, and gives them a way to internalize Mass through playing pretend. We love to talk about what each of the different items is used for. One of our favorite Mass Kit memories is when JP’s siblings were over and the kids lined us up to distribute communion. Such a great tool!
3- Our Example
This one is totally free. 🙂 When our children see us looking forward to and engaging (as much as we can with young kids) in Mass, it sets an example for them to follow. Our lives and actions speak louder than our words, and our attitude towards Mass and participation in it will stick with them in a very powerful way.
We hope you found these tools helpful! It’s always good to give kids tangible ways to connect with their faith. One of our deepest prayers is that our kids will grow up with a living and active faith of their own. Incorporating these things into our family life is one way we are helping build for them a solid foundation.
-Lorelei and JP