Ink Slingers Instagram Photo Challenge Lent Liturgical Year Rita

2017 Lent Photo Journey

2017 Lent Photo Journey
Lent is just a little over a week away and I’ll admit, I haven’t really begun thinking about the Lenten season. I’ve heard the announcements before Mass about the various Lenten offerings at our parish- the Bible studies, Lenten Mission, Parish Fish Fry and Stations of the Cross- but I have no idea what I’m doing for Lent. Well, no idea what I’m doing aside from the Catholic Sistas 2017 Lent Photo Journey.

I love taking (and looking at) photos, so the Catholic Sistas Lent Photo Journey is a perfect way to integrate something I already do daily (take photos) with the season of Lent. The Lent Photo Journey allows me to bring the Lenten season into my daily life, and encourages me to search for God in new and different ways as well.

I’m delighted to officially sharing the Catholic Sistas Instagram Lent Photo Journey space with some wonderful friends and sisters in Christ, AdrienneCeleste, CindyKristin and Rosemary (and find me here). And I invite y’all to join us in recognizing God’s presence in the every day things, people, and situations around us and snapping a photo or remembering a moment in our past that God has touched and finding a way to share that visually. I’m excited to see what the Holy Spirit has in store for us to share with each other in this Lenten Photo Journey together. Happy clicking!

How the 2017 Lent Photo Journey Works

• Each day has a pre-selected word associated with it. You snap a photo (or find a photo in your photo archives) related to that word and share it on social media. The photo does not have to be faith-themed. The goal of our Photo Journeys and Challenges are for us to see God in our everyday lives.

• When posting your photos on social media, use the hashtag #CSLentIPJ and any other appropriate hashtags (#ash, #trial, #Catholic, etc) with your Photo Journey photos. This allows us as Catholic Sistas as well as everyone else in the Catholic Sistas community to search Instagram and other social media platforms for others who are participating in the Photo Journey. (CSLentIPJ = Catholic Sistas Lent Instagram Photo Journey)

• The main social media platforms for the Lent Photo Journey are Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, but we’re present on many other platforms. Tag us with @CatholicSistas on INSTAGRAMPINTEREST and FACEBOOK, @Catholic_Sistas on TWITTER and +CatholicSistas on GOOGLE+. And if you’re blogging about your Lenten Photo Journey, link back to us or comment below with a link to your post.

• Download the 2017 CSLentIPJ Graphic for quick reference. Note that weekends are a different color to help visualize each week better. Also, after you download the graphic, share it with others and invite them to journey with us too! And consider using the LENTEN PHOTO-A-DAY JOURNEY PARTICIPANT GRAPHIC on your social media sites, such as a profile picture on Facebook or for promotion on Instagram.

2017 Lent Photo Journey

Crafts Domestic Church Hannah M. Ink Slingers Lent Liturgical Year

Celebrating Lent with A Homemade Candle

Candlemas is coming up on February 2nd! There are three occasions that are celebrated on this day: the presentation of Jesus, Jesus’ first entry into the temple, and Mary’s purification. Traditionally, you can bring candles to mass on that day and have them blessed by your priest. What could be more special than having a blessed candle that you made yourself?! Well, I’ll tell you what could be better: A blessed candle that you made yourself that also is used to help keep yourself on track this Lent! Lent begins on February 13th this year- and we all struggle with sacrificing something we love- whether it be food, coffee, or a television show we enjoy watching. During this Lenten season when you’re having a tough time you can light your candle and pray instead of eating that cookie or flipping on the television!

This year I decided to abstain from coffee. I searched high and low for a small trinket to represent coffee and had a tough time. I found a small teapot charm, which would work just fine, but then the idea hit me. Why don’t I just put my candle in a coffee mug? So I went to Starbucks and got a couple coffee mugs on clearance so instead of reaching for a cup to pour my coffee in, I can light my candle.

I attached a Saint Paul medal (who is my saint for the year) and a cross to one of my candles so I say a little prayer then light it for the rest of the day and it serves as both a prayer candle as well as a delicious scent for my whole home!


1. Candle wax- I used soy wax, but you can use beeswax or paraffin as well. When choosing your wax, make sure that it isn’t “tapering” wax. We aren’t making tapered candles; we are making container candles so you’ll want to get wax that can be used for molding or container candles.

2. A container to pour your wax in to for your finished candle. I used a small mason jar and a coffee mug for mine- you can use almost anything you want, as long as it’s not plastic. 😉

3. Something to melt your wax in. I used a cooking pot and a glass measuring cup- they sell containers specifically for melting wax, or you can use a double boiler. I didn’t have a double boiler so I used a metal cookie cutter to raise my measuring cup off the bottom of the pan.

4. Wicks. It’s best to get pre-waxed and pre-cut wicks for easy crafting. You can also buy rolls of wicking as well as wick bases and dip your own.

5. Something you can use to twist the wick around and keep in place- I used a pencil.

6. A dab of hot, tacky, or super glue.

7. A thermometer- A candy thermometer works great.

8. Optional supplies include: fragrance oils, colorant, ribbon, saint medal, crucifix or cross and something representing what you’ll give up for Lent this year.


Here’s whatcha do:

1. Melt your wax to around 165 degrees. It’s really important that you monitor the temperature of your wax and never let it exceed 300, because it can catch fire around 350 degrees. If your wax catches fire- do not use water to extinguish it- use baking soda or a lid.

2. Put a dab of glue on the bottom of your wick base and secure to the bottom of your container. (I like to have this done before the wax is ready to be poured)


3. Remove wax from heat and thoroughly stir in coloring and fragrance.



4. If you have something representing what you are sacrificing for Lent, put it at the bottom of your container. You can also put in a crucifix or saint medal for a special meaning.

5. Pour in your melted wax, leaving a little bit of room at the top.


6. Take a pencil or other object and twist the wick around it until it sits flat on the top of your container. Make sure the wick is completely centered for a safe and even burn.

7. Do not move your candle while wax is still melted. Let sit overnight, or around 6-8 hours to allow the wax to fully harden.

8. Decorate your container with ribbon or other decorations for a personal touch.



Don’t forget to practice candle safety- and always blow it out before leaving the house 🙂
BirgitJ Crafts Domestic Church Faith Formation Holy Days of Obligation Ink Slingers Lent Liturgical Year Mary Offering your suffering Prayer Rosary

EGG-straordinary Lenten Rosary Project for your Family

I’ve been reflecting on Lent for the past week and how I am going to observe this time of penance, alms giving, and prayer. My thoughts then brought to mind the little souls with whom we are entrusted as parents, grandparents, and God-parents.

Since my babies are all so young (2 – 6) I thought it would be best to help them in the ‘doing’ and ‘praying’ categories. The resulting project reinforces/teaches all of the prayers of the Rosary (most know the Sign of the Cross, Our Father and Hail Mary). This can be a transitional addition to their customary nighttime prayers – reciting a decade of the Rosary, while concentrating on a particular mystery each night.

This simple, inexpensive and effective craft combines reciting a nightly decade of the Rosary with some good actions and creativity thrown in for good measure:

Lenten Rosary Project Materials List:

  • Plastic Easter Eggs (1 larger egg for the Our Father and 10 smaller eggs for the Hail Mary)
  • Colorful curling ribbon or pipe cleaners
  • Paper and markers/crayons
  • Tongue depressors or Popsicle sticks
  • Glitter glue, puff paint, stickers or other embellishments
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
Lenten Rosary Project construction:

    • Thread pre-cut sections of pipe cleaner or small strips of ribbon through the holes on both ends of the small plastic Easter eggs, until you have a chain of 10.
    • Tie a knot in the ribbon or bend a ‘knot’ into the pipe cleaner and hot glue inside each egg to secure.
    • Add one larger Easter egg to your chain for the Our Father to complete the decade.
    • For the cross, shorten one of the tongue depressors and then form into a cross shape. Secure with hot glue and embellish with a sticker, if desired.

Lenten Rosary Project instructions:

Say one decade of the Rosary each evening using your Easter Egg Rosary and add your offerings (good deeds, petitions, or coins) for that day. This is a good time to discuss behavior, sharing and giving.

  • Chose a petition, good dead, or prayer for each member of the family and write/draw on a piece of paper.
  • You could also have your little ones earn pennies to share with the poor.
  • Place these papers or coins inside a plastic Easter egg.
  • On the weekend you may choose to draw or color pictures depicting the mysteries you have prayed during the week and make a booklet to go along with your newly completed Rosary.
At the end of a 5 day week you will have said all five of the respective mysteries and by the end of 4 full weeks you will have said all 4 sets of mysteries…and the COMPLETE Rosary. You should now have corresponding booklets with pictures of the all  20 mysteries.

You may now move on to coloring pages of the Stations of the Cross as your activity. Continue to use the Rosary you have made for praying a decade every evening as a family, as is now your practice. Last year, 3-year old Simon and 1-year old Rachel  learned all of their rosary prayers this way. The family developed a nightly rosary ‘habit’.

On the evening before Easter Sunday, parents may wish to fill each egg with a treat or surprise and then hide the eggs for the traditional Easter egg hunt on Easter Sunday. Or you could keep them intact and still fill with treats. Your kids will have had a chance to count down the 40 days and reap a reward for their patience and efforts, seeing a tangible result! Hopefully you will also have enhanced your family prayer habits. God bless you…and may we all have a fruitful Lent.

Let us all pray for one another!

Here are some links to coloring pages for use with your Easter Egg Rosary Project:

Stations of the Cross coloring pages for all of the stations.

Stations of the Cross carousel – a great way to display the colored pages.

Lamb of God Lenten Calendar uses cotton balls on a cute lamb print-out.

Walk the Lenten Path  to countdown the days, put a sticker on each square every day.

Almsgiving Activity for Children During Lent fill this cross-shaped craft with coins.

Catholic Rosary coloring pages to print. Includes Luminous Mysteries and much more!

Sign of the Cross diagram and coloring page.
Our Father – prayer coloring sheet.
Hail Mary – prayer coloring page.
Designs by Birgit – find more of my musings, crafts, and recipes here.
*Note: you could also do the above project using a paper chain much like those that are made during Advent to adorn your Christmas tree. Each ‘link’ in the chain could be a Hail Mary and a larger ‘link’ could be added for the Our Father. You could write on the slips of paper before creating the links.