Lent activities for children and families – favorite links

February 19, 2015

I regret that I’ve had little time to be able to dig for new resources to recommend for children / families or Sunday School lessons during Lent.  We always have MANY visitors to our blog looking for those.  This year, I’ve just not had the time to put together any new resource compilations for family activities.

But here are a few old favorites, which I’ve checked to make sure the links are still working:

From Catechist’s Journey – an excellent Roman Catholic site:


Fridge Art:  Family Activities for celebrating Lent & Easter

Fridge Art:  The Lenten Cross – a Lenten version of a “Jesse Tree” with a reading and a symbol for each day of Lent.

There is also a shorter similar 12-day activity – “The Easter Tree” from the FridgeArt site.


Christine Sine at Godspace has put together a good compilation of Lent links for 2015, including a number of compilations for children & families:


From here at Lent & Beyond:  one of our most popular posts of all-time is from 2010

Lent and Ash Wednesday Activity Ideas for Families

also, our 2014 entry: Resources for Celebrating Holy Week with Kids

Our Lent: Children & Families category has more links


As always, we invite our readers to share your favorite links & resources in the comments, thanks!

Resources for Celebrating Holy Week with Kids

April 6, 2014

I’m so glad Christine Sine at Godspace pulled together a compilation of Holy Week family activities, as it’s not something I have time to do this year.  GO CHECK IT OUT!

I really like the Easter Story Cookies


One family -focused link I did come across recently and bookmarked is this blog entry from 2011:  Celebrating Holy Week with your kids.  Ideas and resources posted there include:

  • a Holy Week “Jesse tree” – ideas for ornaments and short devotions (Scripture verses) for each day of Holy Week
  • Some books / stories from Focus on the Family
  • Some recipes

Calvin Institute of Christian Worship: Lent Resource Guide

March 7, 2014

I may have linked some of the featured resources in the past, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen or linked this Index of excellent Lent Resources from the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship website.  Check it out!


Two Exciting Resources for Lent

February 27, 2014

Regrettably, I don’t think my schedule will allow for much, if any, Lenten blogging this year. It would have been fun to do a special Lenten series this year in honor of Lent & Beyond’s 10th anniversary. (We began in February 2004 at the beginning of Lent.)

But with Ash Wednesday quickly approaching, I wanted to at least quickly post about two excellent Lent resources:

1) Let us Keep the Feast: Epiphany & Lent

This is a short booklet (64 pages) that provides an overview of some of the history of Epiphany and Lenten observances and gives lots of simple, practical ideas for how to celebrate these seasons at home as a family.  I enjoyed the Advent edition of this series. Jessica Snell, who blogs at Homemaking Through the Church Year, and who is a good friend of this blog, is one of the editors.  Here’s the Amazon Link

2) Lenten music: Lent at Ephesus, Benedictines of Mary, Queen of the Apostles

When I logged into iTunes about 2 weeks ago, I was very excited to see a featured album of sacred music for Lent.   It’s a release of Lenten music by the Benedictine nuns at the Priory of our Lady of Ephesus.   I loved the album of Advent music these nuns put out two years ago, so this is sure to be another excellent choral feast of sacred music to aid in Lenten devotions.   I haven’t bought this yet.  I plan to download it next week if I can get a decent internet connection (our continual internet outages are yet another reason I’ve not been blogging lately…).  But if it’s anywhere near as good as the Advent at Ephesus album, it is VERY worth buying!  Here’s the iTunes link:  Lent at Ephesus

Holy Week Devotional & Family Resources

April 3, 2012

A few links to some resources that look helpful for Holy Week:

Presbyterian Pastor Mark D. Roberts  has a devotional guide /.series of reflections for Holy Week based on the seven last words of Christ.

He also has a devotional guide for stations of the cross


Christianity Today:  Suggestions for Bible Readings and Family Activities for each day of Holy Week.


Passionate Homemaking Blog has what looks to be an excellent Family Devotional Guide for Holy Week


Children’s Ministry.Com has a short guide with ideas for Sunday School activities for Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter


This is a link I’ve posted before, but I want to repost it again this year:  the CRI Website has a good overview of Holy Week, including ideas for a Christian Seder.  The overview helps explain the reasons and traditions of various special church services during Holy Week.


I will try to add to this list and welcome readers’ recommendations and links!

Lent 2012 – INDEX of ALL Lent Posts by Category

March 14, 2012

Last Updated:  Feb. 11, 2013

Below is an index of all of our 2012 Lent Entries, organized by their primary category, with most recent posts in the category listed first.   Note:  Because we posted an extensive collection of entries during Holy Week of 2012, I have compiled a separate Holy Week 2012 Index here.

You can find all NEW Lent Entries by using our Lent 2013 tag.  Also, you may enjoy our brand new compilation of recommended blogs and websites for Lent 2013.


1. Lent Devotionals

A Lent Poem: Barnfloor and Winepress

Dean Munday: Living in this World Longing for Home

Living Out Lent – pray for a desire for what truly satisfies

George Herbert: Confession

Lent reflections: “Formed by Small Things”

John Piper: Lent or No Lent, Life is War

Pastor Ray Ortland – 10 Things that Most Matter in Life

Temptation is Personal, Not Generic

Bishop Mark Lawrence: Ash Wednesday Meditations at TSM, Feb 2012

Read the rest of this entry »

The Jesus Tree: A Lenten Journey Through the Gospels

March 7, 2012

Our previous posts on a “Lent cross” or a “Lenten Jesse tree” have been some of the most popular entries among all of the nearly 5000 posts at Lent & Beyond.

See here, and here for these previous posts.

A “Lent Tree” is basically a Lenten version of a Jesse tree with daily ornaments / symbols and devotional readings for each day of Lent

Last week I came across some new resources for a Lent Tree. Perhaps it’s too late for 2012, but I wanted to post information on what look to be very useful resources for the future. I have not checked these out personally, but they look like they might be worth exploring.

Here’s a blog post recommending this book and activity kit.
Amanda is also very helpfully blogging her daily reflections as she does this “Jesus tree” activity with her family. What a great resource!

Here is information on purchasing the book and activity kit.

Joe Paprocki’s 40 ideas for 40 days – a great Lenten FAMILY resource

February 23, 2012

Yesterday I linked Rachel Held Evan’s blog post with 40 ideas for the 40 days of Lent.  Today I want to highlight another GREAT 40 ideas web page – particularly for families.

Joe Paprocki at Catechist’s Journey has a wonderful 40 Ideas for 40 Days website – kind of like an online Lent calendar, with daily ideas for activities for children & families during Lent.

A few of the wonderful & creative ideas

A “Walk the Lenten Path” Lenten Calendar

A “Change of Heart Tree”

“Forty Crosses” (English or Spanish) – to track “good deeds” done in Lent

A Salt-Dough Crown of Thorns

Families, and Sunday School teachers check it out!

Lent Resources – An Online Lenten Calendar: “40 Ideas for 40 Days”

February 22, 2010

This falls into the “how could I have possibly missed this resource?!” category… Do check this out!

Thanks to a blog that I just discovered this morning and linked below, Catechist’s Journey, by Joe Paprocki, I’ve discovered an online Lenten Calendar:

40 Ideas for 40 Days

(Note: Click on the activity title on each day to visit the activity detail.)

Here’s how Joe Paprocki describes the calendar:

These activities come from a variety of sources: from my own experience as a catechist, from various Web sites that I credit accordingly, and from catechists like you who shared their creative ideas with me. The activities are grounded in the symbols, Scripture readings, devotions, and traditions of the Lenten season. Be sure to check this calendar each day to find another Lenten activity that you can adapt for your own setting.

More on Lent for families / Lent in the home

February 22, 2010

Somehow I missed Amy’s post at Splendor In the Ordinary last week about how she and her family decorate their home for Lent.

Amy also has a post on Children’s books for Lent, and a lovely reflection and testimony about attending Ash Wednesday services with small children: Worshipping with Little Children.

Also on the family front, I’ve been remiss in not linking Jessica’s Homemaking through the church year blog. (Not being a mom, it’s a blog I don’t visit so often…, but it is excellent.) You can find all of her Lent posts here. Her Lenten posts so far this year have primarily focused on fasting as a family, including a ton of meatless recipes for Lent

Finally today, while looking for something else online, I came across an excellent blog Catechist’s Journey with ideas for Sunday School lessons for Lent – but many of these could also be used by families at home.  This looks like a truly WONDERFUL site.  I think I’m going to add it to our sidebar…  Hie thee hence!

Check out the following entries:

First Sunday of Lent – Needs vs. Wants

A CALENDAR of 40 Lenten Activities!

Lots ‘o Lenten Links

Don’t forget you can find all our posts on Lent resources for family and children here.

Ideas for Lent Activities for Kids – from Story-formed blog

February 18, 2010

Good news!  I mentioned in my entry Lent 2010 Around the Blogosphere that I hoped Tara at Story-formed would resume blogging for Lent.  She has!

She has a new post Lent & Kids #2 – here’s an excerpt:

I have a few moments of quiet and just thought I’d share a few things we are going to do as a family to observe this Lenten season together:

During a conversation around our breakfast table, we discussed Lent and the stories or images that are often associated with it.  From these stories we decided to form some activities that our family will engage in during the next 40 days.

1.  Prayer – this is a no brainer, but prayer is at the very heart of Lent.  We ask God to “create in us a clean heart”, to help us see ourselves and Him ever more clearly, and to deepen our union with Him.  Because of this, we are going to set up a little prayer space in our house.  It will be a corner with a little table, a candle, a prayer book, a bible and whatever else our kids decide to add to it.  Both of them struggle with prayer (they think it is boring!) so there may be some unconventional items in our prayer space.  However, the point is to create a space that reminds us to pray and helps take us further into our prayer practice.

2.  Tie-Dye – As we talked about the imagery of Lent being the dying to self and Easter being the risen to new life, baptism naturally came up.  In the process of the conversation, my husband shared with us that “baptism” was the word they used when they dyed fabric.  What went in one color took on a new color after being dipped in the dye.  I thought that was a beautiful picture of us sharing in the life of Christ – of being baptized into Him – and coming out colored by His life, death and resurrection.  So….we are going to do a couple types of dyeing experiments.  The first will be taking black shirts and using bleach on them (the idea being that He has washed us whiter than snow).  The second will be taking white shirts and tie dyeing them to give us a physical picture of our lives taking on the colors of Jesus.

Go read the full entry here – there’s a lovely short reflection at the end!

Tara’s 2009 Lent & Kids post is here.

Lent 2010 at Lent & Beyond

February 17, 2010

lentThis post is sticky. All new posts are below.

Lent 2010 officially begins on Feb. 17th and continues through April 3rd.  This page will stay at the top of the blog throughout Lent to help readers easily find the many different varieties of Lenten resources and devotionals we have posted.

A Blessed Lent to all of our readers! May the Lenten entries posted here be an encouragement to spiritual growth and may they exalt our Lord Jesus Christ.

We should have a Lenten prayer and/or quote just about every day of Lent.   So check back often!

All of our Lent entriesLent Posts Index 2006-2009Lent QuotesLent PrayersLent Devotionals Lent Resources . Lent: Family & Children . Our Top Ten Favorite Lent Resources .

2010 Index follows below

Read the rest of this entry »

Ash Wednesday Index

February 17, 2010

Over the years we’ve posted a lot of great Ash Wednesday prayers, reflections, resources, etc.  Here’s a listing:

Ash Wednesday Links and Resources – updated

Lent and Ash Wednesday Activity Ideas for Families

The Readings & Collect for Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday Prayers: Turn to us O Lord, and we shall be turned

Ash Wednesday: A Communal Prayer of Confession

Two Ash Wednesday Prayers

Lent around the blogosphere (mostly Ash Wednesday)

One blogger’s Daily Prayer for Lent

Seek the Lord and Live, an Ash Wednesday Devotional


Ash Wednesday thought from the Northern Plains

Lent Quotes: the real question of Lent

Lent 2010 Around the Blogosphere (updated)

February 16, 2010

Update: there is now a Lent category at Anglican Mainstream.  You’ll find Anglican Mainstream’s  daily Lenten devotionals here.


The roundup below is listed in alphabetical order by blog, not in order of priority.


At Awakenings, my Lutheran pastor friend Eric Swensson (aka the Pietist) posted a great prayer last week on the theme of Christ’s transfiguration and praying that His light would shine in the darkness of our hearts.  I like it as a Lenten prayer. Eric usually has lots of good devotional material, so well worth bookmarking his site for Lent.


Orthodox priest and blogger Fr. Stephen Freeman has a number of recent posts in preparation for Lent at his wonderful blog Glory to God for All Things.

The Instinct of Repentance (This probably will form the basis for a stand alone entry here soon)

The Great Fast (I’m likely to post an excerpt from this tomorrow.)

A Sermon on Repentance (after St. John Chrysostom)

By the Waters of Babylon (a traditional Orthodox Lenten-season hymn)

Also, this morning I’ve reposted a previous Lenten reflection from Fr. Stephen “The Difficulty of Lent” from our old blog’s archives.


Christine Sine at Godspace today has posted Morning and Evening Prayers for Lent.

Read the rest of this entry »

Lent and Ash Wednesday Activity Ideas for Families

February 16, 2010

From Amy at Splendor in the Ordinary blog and her Shrove Tuesday post, comes this list of ideas for Lent family activities – particularly appropriate for Ash Wednesday:


  • Plant seeds in a flower pot to sprout by Easter, an easy symbol of new life for children to grasp.
  • Play a game to see who can remember the most 40s mentioned in the Bible and see which ones fit the rubric of fasting and feasting that we see in Lent to Easter.
  • Discuss as a family what Lent means and why it is a practice of the church, particularly sharing with each other what God has done in past Lenten Seasons as a means of encouragement to begin the fast again but also so that our children may see our hearts rather than what some may believe is just a time of guilt and rules and restrictions.
  • Color a picture of the imposition of the ashes to prepare the children for what will happen during the Ash Wednesday service. Also coloring a cross to hang in their room. I’m also trying to think of something to do to illustrate our theme this year of “an undivided heart.
  • Read the Scripture for Ash Wednesday so we may begin to meditate and receive of His Word.
  • We end by praying the Litany of Penitence.

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