Sunday, August 23, 2015

DIY Children's Mass Books: Part 3

For the next part of our Mass books, let's get into the Kyrie and the Gloria. Going forward I am planning on posting a new Mass part once a week. This time around it took me a while to post again because of having some other commitments this past week.

If you're just popping in, make sure to read Part 1 and Part 2 to catch up to where we are.

The Kyrie in the Extraordinary Form is said 3 times rather than twice as in the Ordinary Form.

The recitation of the Kyrie is also known as the Penitential Rite and is an opportunity to ask the Lord for forgiveness. Here, our venial sins are cleansed from us in order to receive Holy Communion worthily.

For our Mass books, the Kyrie can be very simple because, well, it is simple!

This worksheet shows the call and response of the Kyrie. Your child can color the Cantor's part one color and their a different color, or they can color each of the three sets the same... whatever makes sense to them!

By the way, this prayer is not in Latin, actually. It is in Greek! The reasons why its in Greek and not Latin are going to be left to liturgical scholars. But I will say that I have read in several places that the repetition of three times is an invocation of the Holy Trinity. Maybe that's true, maybe not... but I sure do like the idea.

Save the image and drag it into a word or pages file to print. Here is the double sheet in landscape for multiple printings. If you have a color printer, print in color so their part is in red.

Single sheet if you only need one:

Immediately following the Kyrie, the priest intones the Gloria and the congregation sings along with the choir.

For this page, print out in color and have them cut out and paste the Latin prayer with the English translation next to it. If your child is older you can have them copy it to the page instead.  Review the prayer together including the pronunciation of the Latin.

Since this prayer is sung, print out the sheet music for the Gloria and put it in their Mass book. It's up to you if you want them to have it in regular musical notation or in Gregorian chant notation.

If your congregation uses the Gloria VIII (Missa de Angelis), here it is in both forms of notation. Otherwise find the sheet music your congregation uses and print it out for the Mass book.

I would recommend spending some time over the course of a week listening to the Gloria and practicing with with the sheet music. Here it is on YouTube for the Gloria VIII, where you can follow along line by line in chant notation. If you do want to use chant notation, its really not very hard. Just read left to right, bottom to top. In other words, if there are two notes stacked together, sing the bottom note first. A line over the note or a dot next to it means you sing it roughly twice as long as a regular note.

Up Next: The Collect and the Epistle

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

DIY Children's Mass Booklet: Part 2

Are we ready to start this thing?? I hope I have allowed enough time for you to buy your binders and sheet protectors and to finish your cover page. And if you haven't done it yet, giddyup!

So once you have your binders, gather up your markers, crayons, pencils and even scrapbooking supplies or religious stickers you might have. The more stuff the kids can use to decorate and bedazzle, the better! As we did last time, save the images and then drag-drop them into word or pages. You can print them from there.

Prayers at the Foot of the Altar

Catechesis: You may want to read the full exchange between the priest and servers at the foot of the Altar so they can get the full text of what is being said - if, that is, you think they can follow. This will be largely dependent on their ages and attention span. You could also do what I did - a general explanation about the prayers, with descriptions of what it will look like. I did the talking while they worked on their Page 1 activity.

Page 1 Activity: The first page is very basic - just have the kids color the bubble words of the title and the choir image at the bottom. Then they can color around it, add stickers, or do whatever their little hearts desire, so long as they do not totally obscure the words or images. The point of this page is to open up the conversation about the prayers at the foot of the Altar. Again, save the image and drag-drop into Word or Pages to print. If you only want one, crop the image. As I mentioned in my last post, I am making them double because I suspect most of  us have several children and thus need several copies.

Page 2 Activity: The second page is slightly more involved. For the purposes of making it understandable to young children I have simplified the prayers for some of these pages. Those of reading and writing age can fill in the word bubbles with the following words, in this order and going clockwise (I think the phrases will fit better this way):

I will praise you upon the harp, O God

Judge me, O God

God, you are my strength

I will go into the Altar of God

Glory be to the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit

Encourage them to unite their hearts to those prayers during Mass.

For the little ones, I have pre-filled them with bubble words that they can color. And of course they can feel free to bedazzle the page any way they'd like.

 Here is what Violet's (age 6) looked like when she was done:

Page 3 Activity: In this activity, your kids will envision and draw what they should look like while Father is praying at the foot of the Altar.  A guided conversation with you will help them understand what "behaving" means.  I'm thinking it'll be good for them to do a little mental rehearsal.

You can print out these angels and have the kids color, cut and paste it at the bottom of the page, for a little extra fun. You could also google "angel free clip art" to find something more suited to your taste. To size it correctly, drag-drop into Word or Pages and adjust the size there.

Page 4 Activity: Older kids can do this page for the Confiteor. The littles can skip the Confiteor, but I don't recommend skipping the above self-portrait, regardless of age!  You can print the Confiteor in Latin and/or English side by side and have them paste it in, or you can have them do some copy work - its up to you! You can find the prayer here with a basic explanation.

We did two of the four pages on two separate occasions. You could do one a day, or all of them at ago - its up to you! The point is to engage them and to catechize them on the Mass part so they know what is happening at each of the different parts.

Coming Up: The Kyrie and the Gloria

Monday, July 27, 2015

DIY Children's Mass Booklet: Part 1

Some time ago when my family started attending the Novus Ordo in Latin, I had my girls work on making their own Mass book (aka missals) to help them follow along with the Latin prayers. I figured if they had made it, colored it and drew things about the Mass then they would be more engaged. I was right!  They loved working on their Mass books and it gave me a chance to give them a little mini lesson on each part of the Mass.

Since then, however, our Novus Ordo turned into an Extraordinary Form. Still Latin, but there are many silent prayers and it is a lot harder for them to pay attention. We bought them little children's missals but they seem totally disinterested in them. Since I am busy leading the Schola and my husband is busy baby wrangling, their disinterest may be a cause of their inability to find their place in the book without assistance.

Our 6 year old, Violet, is especially disinterested. She is all over the place. She doesn't even stand or kneel at the appropriate times. Mostly because, well, she just doesn't seem to care enough - and I am not there to correct her. This is the price of leading the Schola.

Ivy, our 8 year old, tries her best but I often notice her staring into space. Our 3 and 1 year olds, of course, are totally out of control and my husband just tries to survive as best as he can. I am sure my fellow church musicians at CC Watershed know exactly what this is like. Still, I know that my service is needed so I continue to chug along and hope for the best.

Recently, in trying to come up with a solution to their disinterest, I remembered our old Mass books from the Novus Ordo and decided that what the kids need is a little catechesis on the Mass parts with the accompanying activity. And, because I am sure someone out there in the world will benefit from it, I am going to try and share the activities with you. I will try to post a couple new Mass parts once a week, and more frequently if I can manage!

Parents, I promise - this project is going to be very easy on you!

STEP 1: Buy a small 3 ring binder with a clear pocket on the front cover, as well as a pack of small sheet protectors for each of your children (even if they are too young to write!) The size of the binder and sheet protectors should be what an 8x11 sheet of paper would be if you folded it in half.

STEP 2: Print the cover page and a recent photo of your child. Print out the image and place your child's photo in the center. They can decorate around their picture any way they'd like, or just write their name and leave it at that. I made it double because I am assuming you have more than one child. But if you don't, just crop out the second image. Save the image to your desktop and then drag and drop it into word or pages and print it out from there. If you print the double image, print in landscape orientation and then slice the page in half to separate the twins.

If you can't find a picture of your child, no problem! Have them draw a self portrait! Once your child has finished decorating it, this cover page will go on the front of the binder in the clear cover pocket. Easy peasy, right??

Ok, so you guys have to let me know if this works, with giving you an image rather than a doc! I am sure there is a way to do it but I am lazy and like shortcuts.

UPDATE: Here is what ours look like. We used colored card stock to "frame" their picture. Then I gave them scrapbooking supplies and stickers and let them go to town!

Stay tuned for more instructions....!

Coming up: Prayers at the Foot of the Altar and Introit