The Lenten season is 40 days of preparation for the greatest feast day in the Catholic Church: Easter. As such, Lent is the greatest time of the liturgical calendar to foster a devotion to Jesus through meditation on his Passion and cross. If you hope that your children will be strong in the faith as they grow up and eventually leave home one day, capturing these liturgical celebrations as a family devotion now is hugely important. Here are five ways to incorporate Lenten devotions into your home that your kids are sure to enjoy and will want to repeat year after year. Find all of these Children's Lent & Easter devotions here.
1. Holy Heroes Stations of the Cross CD
The Holy Heroes collection is pretty popular, and this Stations of the Cross edition is no different. Each station is read by children with meditations and prayers, with music and sound effects too. This interactive CD is great for drive time during the Lenten season. It can also be played every Friday of the year to teach your children that even outside of Lent, Fridays are a special day of penance and reflection on Christ's passion.
2. The Proud Tree Book / DVD
The Proud Tree book is the famous children's story told from the perspective of Rex, the tree that was used to fashion Jesus' cross. Rex is a very proud tree that learned love and humility through Jesus' Passion. The Proud Tree book now has a DVD produced by Ligouri. The DVD is short, only 25 minutes, so it would be great for your kids to watch before heading to Mass. Especially good for the littlest ones.
3. The Animated Passion Trilogy - 3 DVD Set
This three DVD set is perfect for the Lent & Easter season for kids of all ages. The Animated Passion Trilogy closely follows biblical narration, even including passages of Scripture written in text on the screen, so your kids can even learn to memorize Scripture if they watch this enough times! And the great animation will make them want to watch again and again. This isn't just great for Lent, it's also great for catechesis such as First Communion classes.
4. The Stations of the Cross Posters
If you aren't able to do the Stations of the Cross at your local parish during Lent, having them in your home is the next best thing. This children's Stations of the Cross poster set is great. Each cartoon station is in full bright color with a short reflection on the bottom of each. If you have a play room in the home, this may be great for keeping up all year round. It's also great for classroom and homeschool use too.
5. 40 Ways for 40 Days
40 Ways for 40 Days is a popular Lent activity book put out by the fabulous Redemptorists, who always do a great job putting together liturgical devotions for families as part of their charism. This children's Lent activity book gives you all kinds of fun, hands-on ideas that really help your kids understand what Lent is all about. A great way to choose family traditions to do year after year.
Hopefully this quick product overview is getting you enthusiastic about doing some Lenten devotionals with your kids this year. They won't begin to appreciate the significance of Easter without passing through Lent first. All of these activities combined with other things such as Operation Rice Bowl and volunteering at soup kitchens or other parish ministries serving the poor, and your kids are sure to have a well-rounded Lenten experience.
Copyright 2013 Gretchen Filz
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