Happy March! I’ve been having fun putting together a little faith formation calendar for March.
March is an interesting balance of partying and praying, of preparing and renewal. Of course, it is the month that sees us turning the corner into Spring, and as such it is always a balance between the introspection of winter and the outward growth of spring.
March 2nd is Dr. Seuss’s Birthday. Celebrate with green eggs and ham, read your favorite Dr. Seuss book, and talk about the lessons you have learned from Dr. Seuss. Whether it is those Sneetches being snooty, or the Lorax speaking for the trees, Dr. Seuss’s stories have been a teaching tool for generations of children.
March 4th is Mardi Gras.
This is part of the “partying” theme of this month that I referenced above. Mardi Gras is french for “Fat Tuesday”, and refers to the practice of making the most of the last day before the fasting of the lenten season begins the next day on Ash Wednesday.
Mardi Gras can be a fun time
for all ages. The following day you may observe some people with ashes on their foreheads. This is primarily a Catholic practice, for Ash Wednesday
. Ash Wednesday is the beginning of Lent. Many, including some UU’s
, find the practice of lenten fasting (“giving something up for Lent”) to be a rewarding spiritual practice, either with the purpose of reminding one of the sacrifice made by Christ, or of bringing one closer to relationship with God, or of just clearing space in your life for an experience of seasonal renewal.
March 16th is Purim.
This Jewish holiday commemorates the events related in The Book Of Esther, and there are some good picture books about Esther, such as Queen Esther Saves Her People
by Rita Golden Gelman. It is also another of those parties in March, as the holiday
frequently involves putting on masks and having a big party.
March 17th is St. Patrick’s Day
. Another big party day, but as one of the most prominent “saints days” in our American culture, this could be a good time to talk to your kids about just what is a “saint”? Saints
and devotion to saints is part of Catholicism and Eastern Orthodox Christianity. There are a lot of saints
(more than 10,000!) – learn more about an interesting saint today. Of course, the obvious one for the day is St. Patrick, and I am quite fond of Tomie dePaola’s book Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland
for learning more about him.
March 20th is the Spring Equinox,
or the pagan sabbat Ostara.
Great ways to mark the first day of spring with kids include planting flowers, having the first picnic of the year, or other outdoor activities. With the arrival of spring, get out in the garden more with your kids with ideas from books such as Roots, Shoots, Buckets, and Boots.
Download your own pdf of the calendar here: bringingthesacredcalendarMarch 2014
Or as a Word Doc, with hyperlinks: bringingthesacredcalendarMarch 2014
If you find this useful or fun, please let me know. Enjoy!