Thursday, May 7, 2015

Lovely Lady Dressed in Blue Retreat for Girls

Retreats are a great way to engage with your faith, to reconnect with God, to find quiet and time for prayer, and to learn more about who Christ is and who you are in His sight.  We routinely hear about retreats offered for adults or teens, but what about retreats for kids?  While they will be a little different in nature, I think retreats for kiddos can be a great way for them to engage, reconnect, learn, and pray. 

Some other examples of retreats that we have offered include one for boys about the Armor of God and another for girls that we called our Princess Celebration.  The same summer as the Armor of God retreat, we hosted a girls retreat called Lovely Lady Dressed in Blue.

Do you know this poem?  It was made popular by Archbishop Fulton Sheen:

Lovely Lady dressed in blue–—
       teach me how to pray!
God was just your little Boy,
     tell me what to say!
Did you lift Him up, sometimes,
     gently, on your knee?
Did you sing to Him
     the way Mother does to me?
Did you hold His hand at night?
Did you ever try telling stories of the world?
O! And did He cry?
Do you really think He cares
     if I tell Him things–—
Little things that happen?
And Do the Angels’ wings make a noise?
And can He hear me if I speak low?
Does He understand me now?
Tell me–—for you know!
Lovely Lady dressed in blue,
     teach me how to pray!
God was just your little Boy,
     and you know the way.

Author:  Mary Dixon Thayer

The Child On His Knees, pages 24 and 25, The MacMillan Company, New York, 1926

Based on this beautiful and sweet poem/prayer, we wanted to have an afternoon where the girls could learn more about our Mother Mary, about how she can be a guide and model Christian for us, and how she shows us all the dignity of being a daughter of God.

We invited the girls in our (small) CCD program Preschool-6th grade, and asked the junior and senior high girls to come and help.  I am a huge advocate of multi age events- everyone learns, everyone participates, everyone wins!

The event was three hours long on a Saturday afternoon.  The girls and helpers were all invited to wear something blue in honor of Mary, and many chose to dress up a little.  During the day, the main project was to make a personal Mary Shrine.  Many time I like to have several hands on activities that the kids move between, but that large multi part activity was enough. 

We also had a guest speaker.  A friend of mine came and talked about how Mary has been a model for her of what it means to be a young lady.  She even brought her beautiful toddler daughter along and talked about how she teaches her about Mary and femininity. 

The afternoon ended with some quiet time in the church and a special prayer asking Mary to help all of the ladies present to model her more and more so that we can be draw closer to her Son.

I have many pictures from the day, but most have kiddos in them that I won't share here, so the pickings are slim. :) Sorry about that, but here are a few shots of the activities:

Food is also important, so for snacks we had blue kool-aid, and blue jello,
and blueberries,
and cupcakes with blue sprinkles.

We read and prayed the Lovely Lady Dressed in Blue poem. A full page coloring page printable can be found here or you can use the three per page bookmarks by clicking on the image below.

You can hear Sheen recite the poem at the very end of this great talk on Mary:

We put together these goody bags that had lots of coloring and activity pages to take home, and a rosary, and some other fun things.  The bags were just lunch sacks decorated with a copy of the poem printed on blue paper.

The main event of the day was making this Marian lapbook with a pop up shrine, complete with a statue, roses, and candles.

All of the instructions for the lapbook shrines can be found in this post or by clicking on any of these images.

It really was a lovely day, celebrating Mary, and reminding a group of girls how lovely they are in God's eyes.  I recommend planning a retreat for some little ladies in your life!

No comments:

Post a Comment