Advent & Christmas Activities for Children
Whilst recognising that Covid-19 is still a very real threat, we would like to make this Christmas holy and memorable for our children and have lined up a few things to hopefully help with that in the parish.
SANTA SHOEBOX DRIVE
As we approach Advent, we would like to work together as a parish to spread the joy of Christmas outside of our community. For families last year we focussed on ‘Reverse advent calendars’, but this year we have had a specific appeal from one of our outreach projects, a day care centre in Masiphumelele, for Santa Shoeboxes for the children.
For those unfamiliar with the concept, it is buying some essentials and small gifts, and filling a shoebox to gift to underprivileged children for Christmas. Because it is important that the boxes are fairly equal, the list of what goes into them is quite prescriptive, but it is a great activity to get children involved with and thinking more about the less privileged. They can help choose the items to buy as well decorate the boxes.
The centre have asked for a box each for their 33 children, and we feel that this is a challenge that we as a parish can meet. They have 10 boys and 23 girls aged between 3- 5, and each box should contain the following:
• A tooth brush
• A tube of toothpaste
• a new item of clothing (t-shirt, pair of shorts ,or a dress aged 3-5)
• a face towel
• a bar soap
• a packet of sweets such as jelly gums
• a packet of pencils or crayons
• a small toy ( ~R50, so that there is not too much disparity – a toy car or simple doll)
These can all be placed in a shoebox, which as mentioned could be decorated by your children. The deadline to bring them to the parish is the 10th of December, and it might be a nice touch for the children to bring the boxes along to Mass on the 5th December.
As ever, if you have any questions or suggestions, do please let us know.
LIGHTING OF THE ADVENT CANDLES
Throughout Advent, we would like to continue our tradition of a family coming and lighting the candles at the start of every Mass. If your family would like to do this on one of the weekends, please could you sign up by clicking on the below link for the Mass you would like to light the candles at.
SUNDAY SCHOOL ADVENT CANDLES
Throughout the three Sunday school sessions in Advent, we will refer to the specific advent themes and candles. As a reference point for all this, we would like to make wreaths with the children on the first Sunday of advent (28th November). We will be making and decorating the wreaths with the children but would like to ask the parents to purchase a set of candles that the parish is selling for the St Kizito School Uniform Drive which assists underprivileged families. Each set of 4 candles (3 purple and 1 rose) is only R50. Candles are available at the back of the church at registration or from Parish Office. The children will then put these candles on their wreaths, which Father will bless on that day.
And if you have wreaths at home, don’t forget to bring them on the 27th/28th November for a blessing.
Shelter seeking is an Advent custom where a pilgrim statue of the Blessed Mother and St Jospeh is brought to different homes each week. The tradition reminds us of Mary and Joseph looking for shelter when Jesus was about to be born in Bethlehem and “there was no room for them in the inn.” And in today’s world it also reminds us of Christ’s coming - will He find shelter in us?
We need three families to do the Shelter Seeking. The first family will receive the statue from Father at the end of the Sunday Mass (28th November). Thereafter each family will bring it to church and hand it over to the next family at the Sunday Mass, and finally the last family will bring back and hand it to Father Robert and Deacon Mike on the last Sunday of Advent.
If you would like your family to take part in providing ‘shelter’ for one of the weeks (you will need to be at the Sunday Mass both weekends, one when you receive the Pilgrim statue and the second when you pass it on to the next family), please sign up by clicking on the below link:
Please join this a new and joyful tradition in our parish for all the children - a tradition started by Pope John Paul II.
Bring your baby Jesus statue from your nativity scene to mass on the 3rd Sunday of Advent (11/12 Dec) to be blessed by Father.
There will be no Children's Mass in December because of Children's Liturgy every week.
WHAT AND WHEN?
1st SUNDAY OF ADVENT
Advent wreath making
Blessing of wreaths
Shelter Seeking Wk1
2nd SUNDAY OF ADVENT
Shelter Seeking Wk2
3rd SUNDAY OF ADVENT
Shelter Seeking Wk3
Bambinelli Sunday - bring your baby Jesus from your crib to be blessed by Father
4th SUNDAY OF ADVENT
Shelter Seeking Wk4
CHRISTMAS EVE/CHRISTMAS DAY
Shelter Seeking statue returns to church
For Mass Schedule go to Home Page.
Click on MASS BOOKINGS link above to book for Mass.
To find out more about these and other events contact:
Nic Stipinovich: email@example.com
PPC - Youth & Families
Josette Koen: firstname.lastname@example.org
Covid Ministers Co-ordinator and Co-ordinator of the Children's Activities for Advent 2021
We hope that these activities will help your children to prepare for Christmas.
If you have any other activities you do with your children that are Christmas related, please share them with us so we can introduce them to the wider parish.