Saturday, April 7, 2012

Divine Mercy Chaplet

I've been receiving quite a few requests lately for the Divine Mercy chaplet/novena printable that I created last year.  Here's a photo of it:

If you would like to download it, I've posted the document on Google docs.  I updated the authorizations and now anyone should be able to download it without sending a note to me first.  If you are still having problems, please email me through the Google docs link and I'll try to figure out the problem.  You can get it here

I would also like to recommend a sung version of the chaplet, recorded live at the National Shrine of the Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.  I guess this is played on EWTN (I don't have cable so I can't verify it.)  My Relevant Radio station used to play it sometimes and I fell in love with it.  It really brings tears to your eyes!  There are several versions but I especially like the one produced by Trish Short.

You can listen to part of it here:

For more information about it, click here.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Good Friday Stations of the Cross at home

How is your Lent going?  I can't believe it is already Holy Thursday.  The next few days will be so busy and I know that the devil will try to creep in and move my focus off Jesus.  I wish I could find a way to shut the door on the many diversions he always seems to throw at me.

I feel guilty because I have only made one Stations of the Cross meditation this Lent.  It seems like there has been something every Friday night--doctor's appointments, a quick out-of-town trip, a scout campout,  soccer games.  I find myself getting more and more irritated that I can't just sneak away and spend a half hour in church.  I especially miss singing the Stabat Mater.

It looks like tomorrow night will be no better.  However, I've decided I won't let that stop me!  We will pray the stations at home at night, after all the day's demands and activities are done.  Even if it's late, we can sleep in a bit on Saturday!  I plan on using my newest  "meditation" tools:

Stations of the Cross candles
For a couple of years, I've been thinking about how I could implement a tenebrae service at home (and perhaps even in my catechism class, if it works at home.)  I love the idea of 15 different candles slowly extinguished while praying special prayers.  Although we're not yet ready to tackle tenebrae, I thought that maybe we could do some sort of candle service while praying the Stations of the Cross, like Tami describes in her Smart Martha website.

I love the "Stations of the Cross" votive candles created by Ruth (Another Day in Paradise), Evann (Homeschool Goodies) and by Joann (10 Kids and A Dog) .  However, I wanted some pictures that would match those I used on my prayer gems and stations of the cross prayer ring.  So I decided to reduce those images and then use Mod Podge to attach them to battery operated tea lights.  One side of the tea light has a picture; the other side lists the station.  Here is a photo:

After I finished the candles, I knew I needed some type of holder.  I originally just used a piece of plywood painted black, until I stumbled across this 7-votive candlebra at Big Lots for $10.  (I had been pricing similar ones online and they all cost more than $30 with shipping.  Two candelabrum would be $60--too much out of my price range.  So I was so excited to find these!)

 A closer view:

 I chose not to use the glass votive holders, since we're using battery operated candles. My candles are a bit smaller than the candle dish but it works okay.  (Next year I may cut some cardboard or Styrofoam to put in the bottom of the candle dish so the votives stand up a bit higher.  But it will do for this year!) 

I'm so excited with this find--I know I will be using it for many occasions other than Lent!

Processional cross
I love the beautiful San Damiano processional cross we use with the kids in the atrium, but it's a bit out of my budget.  However, when I was at Hobby Lobby the other day, I noticed this 4 foot white cross made out of wood:

It was $9.99 minus a 40% discount.  It is designed as an outdoor decoration, but I'll adapt it to indoor use by asking my husband if he can create a stand for it.  My daughter already said "we need to drape it with a purple cloth, mom!" 

How I will use these two items for our Good Friday Stations:
If the weather is nice, we may take our meditation outside to the back yard after it is dark.  Otherwise, I may just darken our basement family room and set the candles around the room. We will start with all 14 candles illuminated.  After we meditate on each station using our prayer cards, one of the kids will put out the candle, and then the cross bearer will lead us in a procession to the next station.  This will continue until we have finished all 14 stations, at which time all candles will be extinguished. I'm hoping this will be a beautiful and memorable way to pray the stations together!

How will you make your Good Friday special?  Would love to hear about it!