What to Give Up for Lent

Lent is the time of year in the church in which we reflect and prepare for Easter. We are asked to give up something that means a lot to us for 40 days as a way to represent Jesus’s sacrifice during his journey through the desert for that amount of time. Some people give up chocolate or other delicious treats, but what about giving up things that are not as traditional? Here are some items you could be giving up during Lent rather than just meat on Friday’s.

Caffeinated beverages

Whether it is coffee, tea, or soda, the common factor is that they all contain that lovely chemical caffeine that we use to wake up in the morning. You just have to put it in the big picture – what is 40 days in comparison to the other 325 days of the year? Absolutely nothing. Why not try a nice herbal tea or green juice instead? They tend to give me a nice pick-me-up in the afternoon when I notice myself nodding off.

Items from your closet

I recently read an article online explaining how we should take an item from our closet each day during Lent, and at the end of the 40 days donate it to Goodwill. This could be anything from clothing you never wear, shoes that are no longer your style, or accessories/bags that you never use anymore. There are plenty of people out there who would love and appreciate your unused items. It’s a win-win for both!

Smartphone

Now I’m not saying to give up your iPhone, but perhaps give up the “smart” part of your phone. That is the part we are most addicted to. Has anyone emailed me about my resume? Did you see the latest cat video on YouTube? Use your phone for what it was meant for – to call people!

Paper Waste

I tease my colleague that she is a “tree killer” because she uses the office printer constantly! Don’t worry – she knows it’s a joke! But one thing you can do is waste less paper and make an impact on the environment. Parish Giving can help with that! Save your church envelope and paper check, and sign up for e-giving instead.

Parish Giving also has graphics to put in your weekly church bulletin to advertise your parish’s e-giving program. That means you no longer have to contact us, ask for a certain amount of inserts, wait for them to be delivered in a cardboard box, and hand them out to parishioners. Now you can just paste it into your bulletin and not use any extra paper!

Remember that Lent is a time to sacrifice and accomplish something you didn’t know you could. These are just some examples of what you can give up. Just try to commit to something for 40 days and see what you can accomplish!

Catholic Schools Week 2019

It’s hard to believe that Catholic Schools Week is upon us once again. This year it is from January 27th to February 2nd. Each day is used to celebrate an important theme for those involved in Catholic education. The themes are vital to CSW (Catholic Schools Week), and to those who in which they represent. Let’s explore some of them and see how they can be celebrated during CSW 2019!

Sunday: Celebrating Your Parish

This seems an appropriate choice for Day 1 and Sunday. What better way to start CSW than to celebrate your schools parish. Students and their families celebrate mass at their schools parish, so many of them will be at church already. A great way for students to celebrate their parish would be to introduce them and inform the other parishioners as to why they advocate for Catholic schools. It’s always nice to hear it from the student’s themselves as to why CSW is important.

Monday: Celebrating Your Community

The stronger the church, the stronger the community; this also applies to the churches school. Our student’s help to build the community and what better way than with service activities. Sometimes having the pupils focus on the community outside of school is the best way to help celebrate the area. Why not visit a retirement center and have a sing-a-long? Or why not host a dance-a-thon or walk-a-thon to help raise money for those in under-served communities. After all, giving back is at the core of Catholic schools.     

Tuesday: Celebrating Your Students

Without the students, there wouldn’t be CSW. Show them how much they are appreciated by allowing them to donate $1 to a cause and allow them to dress down for the day. Why not continue celebrating the students with fun activities like hosting a scavenger hunt, or conduct some fun STEM experiments! Who said that learning can’t be fun?!

Wednesday: Celebrating the Nation

Since CSW is nationwide, it only makes sense to celebrate the nation for making it possible. To know that not only your Catholic school is taking part in CSW, but also schools from California to Idaho to Florida are also celebrating. Some great ways to celebrate on Wednesday is to take notice of the hashtag #CSW19 to see who and where is celebrating.

Thursday: Celebrating Vocations

We often wonder when we hear our calling. This isn’t necessarily for religious vocations, but our life vocation. Thursday can be used as a career day for school children. Have parents come in, as well as religious clergy, to discuss what their career entails. With the different vocations, children are better able to decide what kind of career path they may choose in the future.

Friday: Celebrating Faculty, Staff and Volunteers

These are the people who make every week in Catholic schools happen. Why not celebrate them with something extra special: a nice continental breakfast, some gourmet coffee, their students taking the time to write thank you notes as to why they appreciate them, and so on.

Saturday: Celebrating Families

What a great way to wrap up CSW! There are so many ways to celebrate family! Why not have a board game night in the parish auditorium along with a pizza party? A nice family ice cream social is also a great idea.  So long as it includes the whole family, you can’t lose!

As you can see CSW is a celebrated week by all who support Catholic schools. Parish Giving is a huge supporter in Catholic schools; we even offer a tuition service for schools. You can read about all of our services on our website, or contact us by email to see about a meeting! We look forward in hearing from you!