Summertime, summertime, sum-sum-summertime!

"And what is so rare as a day in June?
Then, if ever, come perfect days;
Then Heaven tries the earth if it be in tune,
And over it softly her warm ear lays:
Whether we look, or whether we listen,
We hear life murmur, or see it glisten...." -- [from The Vision of Sir Launfal James Russell Lowell, 1819-91]

School's out (parish, public and lots of homeschools, too) and the promise of a long and lovely summer lies ahead.

The season of Easter ended with Pentecost, and our liturgical calender flipped once again to Ordinary Time. But when is summer ever "ordinary"?

Take some time this summer to do the things you think about all winter long -- play games outside, go camping (in the backyard, or further afield), read, picnic and get to know one another with no screens between you.

And celebrate these "Ordinary" days of the Church year at the same time -- write a family prayer, and add to it every day. Go to daily Mass (some days!?). Keep a gratitude journal of everyday things. Read a Bible chapter daily. Go to your parish Vacation Bible School. And set a day aside each week for true rest and time with the Lord.

And don't miss this article from OSV Newsweekly with great ideas for adding some faith-filled Catholic stops to your summer road trip!

This month on TCK, we celebrate our dads on Father's Day and the days of Ordinary Time (Find more activities here).

June at a Glance: Download PDF

Saint of the Month: St. John the Baptist (Download PDF)

K thorugh 5 activity

Remember Dad on Father's Day (Download PDF)

Grades 6 and up activity

Keep a gratitude journal

Some scientific studies have shown that people who regularly "count their blessings" are happier than those who don't. Often we are so focused on the negatives in our lives we overlook the positives. So, during Ordinary Time, take a small notebook and, once a day, write at least five things you are thankful for. They don't have to be earth-shattering; "the warmth of sunshine" will suffice. Then, on Sunday, read aloud your list, saying before each item: "God, I thank you for..." It seems like a simple activity, but it can literally be life-changing as a concrete, permanent record of the blessings of your life that is hard to overlook even when you are feeling down.

Stewardship for kids

Summertime stewardship puzzle (Download PDF).

Lifelong Catechesis Corner

Why do you think Catholics make “The Sign of the Cross” when we pray? Find the answer here.