By Anne Metz
Did you know Pope Francis declared 2021 the “Year of St. Joseph?” Did you also know that St. Joseph’s Feast Day is March 19th? This is the perfect time to learn more about St. Joseph as a family, and we have some fun, creative ways for you to do just that! Learn about St. Joe using the 5 senses! These activities not only help your family learn about the stepfather of Jesus, but also help little ones learn about the 5 senses.
Sight: Watch Videos
To learn more about the life of St. Joseph, choose a few books and videos to watch. Together you’ll learn about Joseph’s devotion and love for Mary and Joseph and about what daily life might have been like for the Holy Family. But don’t just stop there; make sure you hit all the 5 senses to experience the life of St. Joseph in a fun, new way.
Touch: Build Something
We know that St. Joseph was a carpenter, and we can assume that Jesus worked alongside His stepfather before starting His public ministry. So, why not build something together? If you are a master craftsman, you may already have the tools and supplies you need to create something out of wood. If not, buy a ready to assemble kit, like a birdhouse for example, from your local craft store or hardware store to work on together as a family. If your kids are older, now might be a good time to work on a home renovation project together.
Hearing: Play the Quiet Game
Did you know that St. Joseph does not speak any words in the Bible? That’s right, none at all. His lack of speaking in the Bible does not diminish his role in the life of Jesus and the example he can be to us all. Just like Mary, he said yes to what God was calling him to be even though it was a difficult thing to accept.
Take this opportunity to talk to your children about the plans God has for them. Ask them, “How can you hear from God?” There are several ways, including prayer and reading scripture, but a great way to hear from the Lord is to sit in silence and listen for his whispers.
Using St. Joseph’s example of Biblical quietness, encourage your children to set aside part of each day to be still and listen. To add some fun, celebrate St. Joseph by playing the quiet game! Whoever can stay quiet longest wins a prize!
Smell: Buy Lilies
In images and statues, St. Joseph is often portrayed with a lily, a symbol of purity. To celebrate St. Joseph, buy some lilies for your home. Every time you smell them, think of St. Joseph and ask him to pray for you and your family!
Taste: A St. Joseph Feast
Feasting on St. Joseph’s Day can be traced back to Sicily in the middle ages. It’s said that after a drought, the people asked St. Joseph to intercede for them. He did, and the drought ended. The people of Sicily celebrated with a great feast to honor St. Joseph, and the tradition continues to this day all over the world.
Go all out and prepare an Italian meal for dinner or just stick to dessert. A traditional food served at this meal is zeppole - fried dough with powdered sugar. Make some for dessert or pick some up from a bakery.
Whether you’re celebrating the Feast of St. Joseph on March 19th, or taking time to honor him all year long, there are tons of fun activities for you and your family to enjoy together.
Click HERE for a brand new coloring page celebrating St. Joseph!