liturgical binder

The other day, I finally made time to do something I've been wanting to do for a while. I pulled out an old binder, filled it with a bunch of plastic sleeves that I've been carrying around for years (tell me you have a stash, too), and set up my Liturgical Notebook.

Right now it just has a bunch of the plastic sleeves and three pieces of paper on St. Valentine's Day. It's a humble start, but it's a start. On Friday evening, Gabriel and I will have a quiet little dinner (I haven't decided what to make yet: either pink, heart-shaped pancakes for dinner, or something traditionally Irish) and I will tell him a story of St. Patrick and talk a little bit about what love is in the familial context as well as the Christian context. It's all going to go over his head, but I could probably get him to eat some pancakes at least (or "cham-pakes" as he calls them). And maybe if I can kick this bug in the pants within a day or two, we will make it to the library to check out a book on St. Valentine.

Ultimately I'm hoping to turn this notebook into a well-loved family institution. Every month I'd like to observe and celebrate the church holidays -- festivals, Saint days, and the broader aspects of the liturgical calendar. It would even be cool to have some decor in keeping with the colors of the church seasons, too. A table runner on the dining table, perhaps. That should be easy enough to change out. Or maybe placemats. I haven't really gotten that far yet.

I've been reading about celebrating the liturgy of the church year at home for years now, since before I even had a child, and it's something I have "wanted to do" for a long time. Over the past two years, I've put together a very small collection of books that do just that -- talk about the major (and some of the minor) festivals throughout the year and offer information on the background of these celebrations, the significance of them, and the ways they can be celebrated. I've got three books and an e-book. Certainly enough to get us started. (Oddly enough, none of these resources has much of anything on St. Valentine, though there are lots of big and small holy days in February.)

Blogs make it easy to come up with ideas for celebrating, as does Pinterest. Oh, Pinterest, sometimes I hate you, but when it's liturgy time you are a cherished friend.

My deep desire is to have a home that is infused with faith and steeped in liturgical tradition, so that my child(ren) can grow up with the understanding of church and spiritual practice in the greater context of living, time, and the rhythm of life. Faith has always been an every-day thing for me, and this is one of the ways I'd like to pass that practice to the next generation.

If anyone is curious about this stuff, I would love to offer more. There are quite a few others who have said a lot already and as a complete novice, I'm not at the point that I can contribute to the conversation yet, but I'd be happy to share some resources!


  1. My binder is currently contained in the back of my general household binder since all space is at a premium around here and why have an additional binder when both topics still don't take up much room. But I got a few sheets of construction paper from mummy in purple, green, white, and red to kind of divide up the sections and it's also full of sheet protectors. Our church actually does a really good job at providing resources for days as they come along so I save everything and add it in. I could make some copies and mail or scan them to you. Things like an Advent and Christmas tree blessing, a leaflet explaining the different ways light is a symbol during the season, a blessing for the doorframe (CMB) for Epiphany. They even gave out these Christmas wafers for us to share with our families for Christmas eve (it's a Polish tradition). We got blessed chalk for the door for Epiphany and blessed candles for Candlemas. I continue to consult The Catholic Home throughout the year too (Meredith Gould--is that one of the ones you have?), but I read a book by Maria von Trapp that was helpful as well--Around the Year with the Trapp family or something like that.

    1. That would be great! I don't have The Catholic Home, but a couple of the ones I do have are written by/for Catholics (including Feast!). I don't think TEC blesses things to use, but I think it would be neat to do that at home.


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