• "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

Monday, January 30, 2017

Celebrating The Feast Of St. John Bosco

I have only come to know St. John Bosco more intimately just last year, after we adopted our son. He has become one of my favorite saints. He is the patron saint of schoolchildren, apprentices,editors and publishers, magicians,  and juvenile delinquents. It is my heart's desire for our son to grow in holiness and so I seek his intercession. I often call out to the beloved saint when Teo becomes extra rowdy or puts himself is dangerous situations. And remind myself of what Don Bosco said:

"Run, jump, have all the fun you want at the right time, but, for heaven’s sake, do not commit sin! (from St. Philip Neri)."

Born on August 16, 1815 in Becchi, Italy; he was given the name Giovanni Melchiorre Bosco. He was nine years old when he had his first dream. Several dreams after that would later influence his life.

Here are 6 activities you can do to celebrate the feast of St. John Bosco at home with your child.

1. Learn about the life of St. John Bosco - Read about his early years, how he was called to his mission, how he began the Oratory, the orphanage and the Trade school here. Or a shorter one here and here.

More reading resources:

Salesian Bulletin: Getting To Know Don Bosco

Don Bosco: A Sketch of His Life and Miracles, Charles D'Espiney

Life and Works of Venerable Don Bosco, M.S. Pine

For younger children like mine, its best to print a few pages and read. We will be reading a few pages from M.S.Pine's book because it has a few pictures.

2. Watch about his life.


Of course the tot will be watching the shorter one.

3. Pray to St. John Bosco - We will be praying A Child's Prayer Through The Intercession of St. John Bosco in addition to our bedtime prayers on his feast day. Here are more prayers online:

St. John Bosco Novena, Pray More Novenas

Prayer To St. John Bosco, Catholic Online

Prayer to Saint John Bosco, catholicity.com

Prayers and Devotions to St. John Bosco, http://catholicharboroffaithandmorals.com/

Novena in Honor of St. John Bosco, EWTN

4. Retell the life story (of part) of St. John Bosco using a St. John Bosco peg doll - This is my new product! But I apologize for not having a photo. The supplier was not able to deliver on time and I still have to paint on them. I promise to write a post about it soon. It will also be in the SHOP

Update: I have a photo! My son and I had so much fun playing with it. He held on to it as we reread a part of the story of St. John Bosco's life then kissed it afterwards.

5. Do a little carpentry play - St. John Bosco taught the boys in The Oratory a little carpentry. He also put a little cobbler shop in a corner of his mother's kitchen. This were the beginnings of the Don Bosco Trade School. 

I'm bringing out his carpentry tools again.

We'll be matching colors and work on our fine motor skills as well on this one.

Since our little tinkerer loves tools, Tatay made him something to practice his hammering and screw driving skills. We used one of my boards to stretch watercolor paper. Tatay put holes on it so Teo can drive in a nail or a screw. 

Find more inspiration here:

6. Pretend to be a magician - Don Bosco learned the tricks of magicians who traveled to their place. With this skill he performed in front of an audience and they had to recite one decade of the rosary as admission.

Teo loves it when Tatay makes things 'disappear' and reappear. He tries to imitate him at times and Tatay and I are his audience.

So I prepared a cape (his blankie) a hat (his fishing hat) and his bunny rabbit in his discovery box. We will be watching a couple of (kid friendly) magic shows online before I bring out the box.

I hope you'll have fun learning about St. John Bosco! God bless you.

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