By Anne Metz
Ordinary Time is anything but ordinary. We aren’t in a season of preparing or celebrating per se, but we are in a season of living out faith. Through the readings in Ordinary Time, we learn about Jesus’ life and how we are called to be Christian witnesses in our everyday lives. So let’s not let this Liturgical Season fade into the background. Here are some ways to put Ordinary Time front and center in your homes.
The color in the Church for Ordinary time is green, so each week at Mass you’ll see a green cloth on the altar and your priests wearing green. Help mark the time in your own home and teach your children the color of Ordinary Time by decorating your house in green! Use a green tablecloth on your kitchen table, drape a green cloth on your mantle, and fill your home with greens from the garden.
You can even try to wear green each week on Sunday when you attend Mass. If that feels like too much green, especially since Ordinary Time is about 34 weeks, pick one Sunday and have the whole family wear as much green as possible! Take a picture together after Mass for the scrapbook.
Go on a Scavenger Hunt
One Sunday after Mass during Ordinary Time, take your family on a scavenger hunt. Take a hike or a drive and spot all the green things along the way. Then, make a collage of the pictures.
Another Sunday in Ordinary Time, work together to make a meal that is completely green. Make a big salad, green smoothies, pea soup, and pasta with pesto sauce. This might even encourage your pickier kiddos to try more veggies.
Learn About the Feasts and Solemnities
There are many important days that happen during Ordinary Time like the Transfiguration, The Assumption, All Saints Day, and more. Mark these days by attending Mass and teaching your children about the importance of these days by reading a book or watching a video about them. Maybe you can even make a special dinner on these days.
Learn About the Saints
Another way to show the importance of Ordinary Time is to learn from those who’ve led incredible lives of faith as an example for us. You’ll find many Saints whose feast days fall during Ordinary Time. Pick a few each year that you want to learn more about. Start with the saints that share your name and your children's names. Attend Mass on these days, spend time in prayer as a family asking that saint to pray for you, or watch a video, read a book, or color a coloring page of the chosen saint.
Make a Liturgical Season Clock
Make a liturgical season clock to display in your home so your family always knows what season it is. Cut out a circle and divide it into the seasons: Advent, Ordinary Time, Lent, Easter, and Ordinary Time again. The kids can help by cutting out the clock and color in the seasons. Then, cut out an arrow and attach it with a brad so you can move the arrow around depending on the season.
Make Ordinary Time special in your home this year by using some of the ideas above, or come up with your own. It’s time to give this green season the respect it deserves.