55 Ways to Connect with Families in Your Parish
Publisher: Veritas Publications
Karen Kent’s 55 Ways to Connect with Families in your Parish is a resource guide for enriching our lives of worship, both in our homes and in our parishes. It is a treasure-trove of ideas, some of which will be better suited than others to each individual parish or family.
Suggestions for family include creating a prayer space inside the home and instituting the practice of a daily decade of the rosary. While prayers marking liturgical occasions can easily be incorporated into individual families, much of the advice throughout is directed at ways of encouraging the engagement of families within the parish.
While many parishes rely on a stalwart team of regulars, parish life is enriched by taking the time to reach out and widen the net of parishioners engaged in celebrating Mass. Kent suggests celebrating the sacraments by inviting candidates for communion, confirmation, married couples or families of babies being baptised, to take part in Masses honouring these sacraments. Children of the parish can also help mark and prepare for holy days by creating a Jesse Tree, preparing the Christmas crib, and participating in a parish Easter egg hunt. Kent’s suggestions are all eminently doable and would make wonderful inspiration for parish councils.
— Clare Cromie-O’Toole, Shillelagh, Co Wicklow
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These imaginative yet accessible suggestions take in key events in the Christian calendar, from Advent and Christmas through to Lent and Easter, and also cover selected feast days and secular dates, as well as periods of particular relevance to children and families. The ideas included here, which incorporate prayers, scripture passages and thought-provoking excerpts from Amoris Laetitia, will inspire all those who help make parish life so spiritually rich and rewarding.