• "Everything is a grace, everything is the direct effect of our Father's love—difficulties, contradictions, humiliations, all the soul's miseries, her burdens, her needs - everything, because through them, she learns humility, realizes her weakness - Everything is a grace because everything is God's gift. Whatever be the character of life or its unexpected events—to the heart that loves, all is well."
  • - St. Therese of Lisieux

Friday, August 26, 2016

Celebrating The Feast of St. Monica of Hippo


On August 27 we celebrate the feast of St. Monica. She is patroness of wives and abused victims; as well as alcoholics, married women and mothers. Her persistent prayers lead her husband and mother in law into the Catholic faith; and her son, St. Augustine's conversion.

Next to our Mother Mary, I ask her intercessions whenever I'm about to loose my patience with my son. I cannot count the number of times a day I say, "Mama Mary and St. Monica, pray for me."

I have planned 3 activities for Teo and I to do. And since August 27 is a Saturday, It's going to be Nanay and Teo's day. So here they are!
1. Pray for others together. St. Monica is known for her persistent prayers. I thought it would be a good idea to model how to intercede for others. Although we pray for blessings and protection for our immediate family members every night before bed, we will put extra effort on this day to pray for friends and family.

I have chosen a few photos of friends and family to show Teo. While we look at the photos, we can talk about the person and pray for them. You may do this with your tot or preschooler anytime that is convenient for you. We will probably do this before afternoon nap. 

I plan to go a little further and make this part of our daily prayers. I found this wonderful idea from One Thousand + Gifts. Instead of prayer sticks, which are really good if you have older kids, prayer flowers have photos of the people you want to pray for. 

2. Mom and me selfie. I rarely take selfies of me and Teo so I plan on taking as much as I can on this day. It does not matter if we're just at home doing our usual routine. What matters is the memories we are making.

The activity may be extended by making a Mom and Me album or a pin up board. This way you both can look at the photos and talk about the events that happened or the emotions you felt at that time. This will help your toddler or preschooler express his thoughts and feelings. Talk about feelings. Let your child know that you will always be there for him, that you will love him no matter how he feels.

3. Home made picture frame. Doing arts and crafts is a perfect bonding experience for you and your child. From the extra craft sticks (or popsicle sticks) you have after making the prayer flowers, you can create a beautiful picture frame for any of your selfies. The little ones can paint, draw with markers or glue buttons, beads or cutouts onto the sticks. Find inspiration on my Pinterest board!

St. Monica, B&W
I plan to make this another day though. While you make this, remind your little one that you will always pray for him like St. Monica did for St. Augustine. This may be also a good time to talk about St. Monica. You can read more about her here.

Here is also a coloring page for older kids. 

Let us continue to ask the intercession of St. Monica to help us be persistent in prayer, not only for our children but for all people. I hope you will do one or all of these activities with your little one. do let me know how it turned out in the comments. 



Download more pictures of the saints here.

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