Choosing Summer Activities to Help Children Grow in Faith
“There’s a time and a place for that, but it’s amazing how good the coming to calm (can be) and how powerful the prayers really are,” she said, even for children who do not yet know the words of the prayers.
Bandzuch, a parishioner of St. Maximilian Kolbe in Delano, recently joined “Practicing Catholic” radio show host Patrick Conley to offer summer activity ideas and resources that can help children grow in their faith.
A mother of six, Bandzuch said she learned to go back to basics and keep things simple – and not just give her kids something, but sit down and engage with them, she said. “That’s really what I see most enlightening my kids,” she said.
Some faith-building activities might include coloring pages illustrating the ABCs of the Church: “a” is for altar, “b” is for baptism, etc. She suggests that parents color with their children and, in doing so, tell them a baptism story. Share simple and fruitful conversations, she said.
A dose of beauty by looking at art is also a good option, she said, “because we all need beauty.” She plans to take her children to some of the beautiful churches in the Archdiocese that they have yet to visit. “It’s a reminder that this is how for centuries people have learned the faith by looking at statues, by looking at stained glass,” she said, and by looking at the architecture of a church . And there is often a playground next to the church, she says.
Bandzuch described a recent road trip she took in a large van with a “mom friend” and their 10 children combined. She found that turning on an “audio rosary” during the ride was a “game changer”. Kids who need to fall asleep will, she says, and kids who need to take a minute to assess fights with their siblings will. “It’s like a different loadout after doing that,” she said.
Bandzuch said it is “essential” for parents to pray with their children every day, any time of the year. In his house, books are available, including a book of saints that describes them and their struggles. Or she suggests reading a story from a child-friendly Bible to children for five minutes at a time.
For more and to listen to the full interview, tune in to the 9:00 p.m. “Practicing Catholic” show, which repeats at 1:00 p.m. July 9 and 2:00 p.m. July 10 on Relevant Radio 1330 AM . To find Catholic resources offered by Catholic Sprouts, including coloring pages and other activities for children and families, visit catholicsprouts.com. Bandzuch said the Catholic Sprouts podcast plays on all podcasting platforms.
Produced by Relevant Radio and the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, the latest broadcast also includes interviews with JoAnn Marshall, president of the nonprofit organization “Choose the Minnesota Life,which is pushing for state legislation that would create specialized Choose Life Minnesota license plates; and Father Tom Margevicius, worship director for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, whose “mass class” topic this week is the Liturgy of the Word.
Listen to their interviews after they air:
Practicing Catholic on Spotify
Category: Practicing Catholic