Faith that Works

Teaching middle schoolers how to live and practice their faith

O Emmanuel, of King and Giver of Law: come to save us, Lord our God! Emmanuel is probably one of my favorite names of Jesus. As soon as I hear this name, I picture Advent and a particular mass memory. My sophomore or junior year in high school, our choir was supposed to sing at …

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O Leader of the House of Israel,giver of the Law to Moses on Sinai:come to rescue us with your mighty power! I’ve always been a good rule follower.  When I started graduate school at the University of Portland, the program I was completing required us to take the Strengths Finder* test and then use our …

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O Wisdom of our God Most High,guiding creation with power and love:come to teach us the path of knowledge! Wisdom is so important in the business of teaching the faith. Every day students come to us with so many needs and so many valuable and valid questions. Why does God allow suffering and evil? Why …

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Happy feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe! A few years ago, I came across an image that I fell in love with. It depicts Our Lady of Guadalupe, not as she usually is shown, but in profile in front of an open window. A starry night sky sparkles over a dark desert. Mary is kneeling, …

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A few years ago my friend Anna introduced me to an online group of Catholic moms who would do peg doll swaps at various points throughout the year. Based on our conversations, I ran my own Jesse Tree ornaments swap and had a great time sharing faith and friendship with some local Catholic moms. Then …

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My personal prayer for Advent is usually pretty simple, as it has to be for a full-time working mom of a toddler. (An added complication is that my husband works nights, so we tend to parent in shifts.) Most years I use whatever devotional is given out at church to be my spiritual guide through …

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