St. Michael's Parish - Cobourg

Editorial Gabarit

Innovative New Year Resolutions

 

Once again we begin a New Year! Traditionally, it’s time for resolutions. What are your New Year Resolutions? How about making just one resolution and keeping it for the whole year? How about giving this resolution a title, a slogan, a sort of motto to live by?

New Evangelization Starts At Home!

 

The New Year Family Blessing is the first suggestion that comes to mind on the first day of the year. Father and mother together bless their children with their special prayer. Then the children bless their parents with their special prayer that they have prepared.

 

Since the Last Supper, the Catholic Church has been greatly influenced by the Jewish People, our close cousins in faith. However, over the two millennia of Christianity we lost touch with some of the beautiful Judaic traditions. In the Eucharistic prayer of the Roman Canon recited during the Mass, the Roman Catholic Church calls Abraham "our father in Faith". The Shabbat celebration in the Jewish homes was, and still is, a very special occasion and provides an exceptional spiritual support for the family.

 

In the Christian tradition, Sunday is the Lord’s Day. Sunday Family lunch or supper is a privileged occasion for the transmission of faith. Quality family time spent together on Sunday helps each child to feel more relaxed, secure, and confident and helps each member of the family to be more understanding and accepting of each other. Celebrating together the Lord’s Day at home is also the greatest way to help children feel positively connected to our Catholic heritage.

After participating in the Sunday Eucharistic Celebration, each family can establish its own tradition to make the Lord’s Day a meaningful, memorable and a joyful experience.

 

Another innovative resolution could be the dedication of a family prayer-shelf or prayer-corner or prayer-table set up in the home. This will help to draw our attention to the sacred rather than the secular. The Catechism (#2691) tells us, “For personal prayer, this can be a ‘prayer corner’ with the Sacred Scriptures and icons, in order to be there, in secret, before our Father. In a Christian family, this kind of little oratory fosters prayer in common.” Also, the family can select a special item that would represent the time of the liturgical year. A small bowl would contain the special prayer requests for the coming week. The prayer corner is a constant reminder of the Lord’s presence in the house and that Jesus participates in family life.

 

Each of us Christians has a patron saint. Celebrating our Name’s Day, is not only a reminder of our patron saint, but reading about her or his life inspires, exemplifies and motivates.

 

The physical home of the Ecclesia domestica should be filled with reminders of our faith such as a placing a crucifix above a doorway. The first Friday of each month, the children could sprinkle Holy Water throughout the home and ask for Our Lady’s protection.

 

In the morning of the first day of each month, parents can trace the Sign of the Cross with their thumb on their child’s forehead while asking for God’s blessing and their Guardian Angel’s protection.

 

Once a year the family can plan together a place of pilgrimage and pray for each other when they are at the site. Together they can send postcards to other family members and friends as a missionary gesture.

 

As a New Evangelization gesture,

each of us can give a copy of this page to one young family, folded in a

Happy New Year card.

 

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Editorial by Laszlo DeRoth published in the

“Tuesday Knighter”,

January-February 2014.

Issued by the

Fr. Francis P. Duffy Council #1970,

Knights of Columbus