November is traditionally a time to give thanks. Our first opportunity to say "thank you" is on Veterans Day as we thank those who served our country. Less than a week ago, we celebrated Thanksgiving and had the chance to thank God for all of the blessings that he has given to us in our lives. All of us who work, volunteer and attend the Religious Education program have much to be thankful for during this past month.
In November, we began our Liturgy of the Word for Children during the 10:30am Mass. It has truly been a great way for all of us, especially the children to experience the Word of God. Just as the Liturgy of the Word is about to begin in the church, the priest invites all the children to go down to Walsh Hall. Once down there, the children hear the readings of the day proclaimed by our volunteers, Diane, Angela, Karen or by one of our priests. The children then get to talk about what these readings mean and how they can live out God's Word in their lives. We then pray the Apostles Creed together and learn more about the things that we believe. The last thing we do before we return to the main church is pray together. The children come up with prayers and ask the group to pray for the things that they are concerned about and together we lift up our prayers to God. As we head back upstairs, each child is given a sheet to take home called The Good News Weekly. This sheet is a great way for families to continue the conversation about Mass at home. If your children have not yet had the chance to experience the Liturgy of the Word for Children, we would invite you to give it a try at the 10:30am Mass this week. Parents are more than welcome to join us too.
On November 3, Fr. Tom stopped by our 8th Grade classes and spent some time talking to them about the saints and All Saints Day. He explained how a saint is canonized and spoke about saints that we can all look to as heroes of our faith. He especially focused on saints that young people can look to as role models. Included in his presentation was a little show and tell with prayer cards, holy objects, and relics of some of the saints. It was a great opportunity for the students and teachers to hear about the saints who we can turn to for help and inspiration.
On November 24, following our 10:30am Mass, we had our November family event, where the children made Thanksgiving Day cards for our friends who live in the senior centers in Nutley. We had a great turnout and children and parents helped us to make 130 cards that were distributed to the senior residents. We also enjoyed hot chocolate and cookies together. It was a great way to spend time as a parish family together.