Lent is all over my Facebook feed, inbox, and tweeting madly. But what can Little Flowers and Blue Knights leaders do to bring Lent alive and relevant to their Catholic Clubs? Let’s ask our brothers and sisters in the faith–the Saints! These Patron Saint badges are great, simple ways to bring Lent alive to your Catholic Clubs, learn something new, change a life or two, and earn a cool new badge to add to their sash, vest or breastplate.
Each badge has five fairly simple tasks associated with it. The first item on the list is to learn about the saint and their connection with the subject of which they are patron. This first item is mandatory in earning the badge. Younger participants can then choose two more, so that three of the five items are required to earn the badge. Older children can do four or all five of the items to complete the badge. Of course, as with all the Behold Christ Clubs badges, the requirements are flexible and up to each individual parent or leader. The suggestions here are guidelines, rather than hard and fast rules on what must be done to earn the badge. Parents and leaders are also welcome to add other requirements they feel may be more effective in teaching the youth always in the context of a Catholic world view.
Check out these top five Patron Saint badges for Lent:
- St. Elizabeth of Hungary, patron saint of bakersSymbol: bread and rose1) Find out about this saint and why she was chosen as patron of bakers. Give a report—either verbal or written—of what you have learned to your parent or leader.2) Baking is different than cooking. Baking includes food that is baked in an oven. Breads are the most common food associated with baking. Find out what ingredients are used in several different kinds of bread. Research different types of grain and leavening agents used in different types of bread. Give a report—either verbal or written—of what you have learned to your parent or leader.
3) Choose a bread recipe that uses yeast as a leavening agent and prepare it.
4) Choose a bread recipe that uses another leavening agent besides yeast and prepare it.
5) St. Elizabeth fed the poor with her baked goods. Make something special for someone in need and deliver it to them.
Lenten bonus: Make homemade pretzels and research why they are a Lenten food!
- St. Vincent de Paul, patron saint of charitySymbol: three coins1) Find out about this saint and why he was chosen the patron saint of charity. Give a report—either verbal or written—of what you have learned to your parent or leader.
2) What religious orders did St. Vincent de Paul found or inspire? Make a list of at least three religious orders that include the word “charity” in their name. Also include the name of their founders and date of foundation in your list.
3) Raise money for a charity of your choosing. Some examples of good charities are: your local crisis pregnancy center, a religious order, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, Food for the Poor, and many others. Make sure that you investigate charities before giving money to them to make sure the money won’t be used to support something that may be against our Catholic faith.
4) Find at least three Bible verses where Jesus talks about serving the poor. Copy those verses on notecards you’ve decorated. Put them up in your room as a reminder.
5) Clean out your dressers and toy box. Fill up a bag of usable items to give to the poor. Challenge yourself to not only give items that are of no use, but ones that have value. Remember that when you give something to the least among us, you give to Christ. Lenten bonus: Research “almsgiving” and why we do it especially during Lent.
- St. Martha, patron saint of cooks
- Symbol: spoon crossed with a fork
- 1) Find out about this saint and why she was chosen as the patron saint of cooks. Give a report—either verbal or written—of what you have learned to your parent or leader.2) Cooking involves meal planning, shopping, food prep, and food presentation. Locate a food pyramid and record your diet for a day. Compare your daily diet with the food pyramid. Did you eat a correctly balanced diet? If not, how can you change your diet in order to eat more balanced?
3) With an adult, plan a meal, shop for it, and prepare it. Don’t forget to use your food pyramid for good nutrition. While shopping, make sure you read food labels and compare prices.
4) Ask your mother, grandmother and others for their favorite recipes. Copy them and put them in your own cookbook.
5) Find a prayer for cooks. Copy it into your notebook or on a notecard and memorize it. Teach it to your family and say it with your prayers before meals.
Lenten bonus: Research “fasting” and why we do it during Lent.
- St. Camillus de Lellis, patron saint of first aid and health care workers
- Symbol: red cross
- 1) Find out about this saint and why he was chosen as patron saint of first aid and health care workers. Give a report—either verbal or written—of what you have learned to your parent or leader.2) Learn what needs to be in a basic first aid kit and make sure that you have one in your home and in each of your vehicles. Assemble your own first aid kits if you don’t already have them.
3) Make sure you have emergency numbers posted near your phone. Practice with a parent what you should do in case of emergency.
4) Learn basic first aid through a Red Cross course, Safe-Sitter course, or something similar.
5) Find a prayer for those who are sick and suffering. Copy the prayer in your notebook or on a notecard and memorize it. Say it daily for at least a week.
Lenten bonus: Research formula, meditative and contemplative prayer and why we concentrate on it during Lent.
- St. Gianna Molla – Pro-Life Work
- 1. Find out why this saint was chosen for thistopic. Share what you found out either verbally or in writing.2. Read one or more of these pro-life books and
share how they show the dignity of every human life. Angel
in the Waters by Regina Doman, On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman, Horton Hears a Who by Dr. Seuss.
3. Gather as many baby pictures of family members as you can find, especially of parents and grandparents. Gather pictures of how they look now. Bring the pictures to your Behold Christ Clubs meeting and see if others can match up baby pictures with their adult counterparts. Even though we grow and develop throughout our lives, we all started as babies. Share what you learned about the value of life through this game.
4. Visit a nursing home or elderly neighbor and spend some time with them. What can you learn about and from the elderly. Share what you learned either verbally or in writing.
5. Attend a pro-life or pro-family rally, March for Life, or prayer vigil for life.
Lenten bonus: 40-Days for Life is a pro-life prayer vigil held in major cities during Lent. Participate in prayer or in person at your local 40 Days for Life.