As I sit down to write to you, I find my heart and mind can’t stray far from the tens of thousands of children who are receiving their First Communion this month.
As you may already know, I’ve spent the majority of my time over the past four years pouring everything I have into BLESSED, our new First Reconciliation and First Communion Experience. It was such a labor of love, and I can’t express the joy I felt while walking through our warehouse on shipping day, gently running my fingers along the thousands of program packs waiting to be loaded onto the shipping trucks.
And now my prayers are filled with the faces and hearts of the thousands of children who are the first children ever to receive their First Communion after going through BLESSED. I have so many hopes for them.
I hope they had a fantastic preparation experience. I hope they have fallen in love with the genius of Catholicism. I hope they meet Jesus in their First Communion. I hope this is a powerful start in their journey toward Confirmation. I hope they become lifelong Catholics. And I hope they learn to hear the voice of God in their lives.
For twenty years I have been encouraging adults to use a Mass Journal to help them hear the voice of God in their lives. I invite people to ask, “God, please show me one way in this Mass I can become a-better-version-of-myself this week,” and then jot down their answer in a little notebook. Now, for the first time ever, we have designed a version of the Mass Journal specifically for children, and we just released it last month.
BLESSED: My Little Mass Journal is filled with beautiful illustrations, words of encouragement, and that same question we pose in the regular Mass Journal. I pray that the journal will inspire children to hear the voice of God, and that the adults around them will in turn be inspired by the beautiful and simple faith of these little ones.
At the beginning of each session of BLESSED, the children pray a prayer together. I labored over this prayer for weeks because I believe the prayers we pray set the trajectory for our lives. This month I have a special request: Will you please join me in praying this prayer for every child who will be receiving their First Communion this spring?
God, our loving Father,
Thank you for all the ways you bless these children.
Help them to be aware that every person,
place, and adventure they experience is an opportunity to love you more.
Fill them with a desire to change and to grow,
and give them the wisdom to choose
every moment of every day.
May our God of abundance bless you and all the children receiving their First Communion this month,