Sacramental Preparation of Children

HELP US OUT!!!!

THERE WILL BE ABOUT 400 CHILDREN GOING THROUGH THE SACRAMENTS THIS YEAR.

THERE IS NOT A BETTER WAY TO EXPERIENCE AND BE CONSCIOUS ABOUT THE MIRACLES IN OUR LIVES THAN SHARING OUR TIME AND KNOWLEDGE WITH THE CHILDREN.

YOU DO NOT NEED TO BE A TEACHER AND THE COMMITMENT IS ONLY ONCE OR TWICE A MONTH DEPENDING ON YOUR SCHEDULE.

TRAINING AND MATERIALS ARE PROVIDED.

COME, MAKE SOME FRIENDS AND BE PART OF OUR SACRAMENTAL PREP TEAM.

For more information call Sacramental Prep. Coordinator Sofia Balcorta 403-254-6878 ext. 102 or email to sacramentalprep@stpatrickcalgary.com


“We witness miracles every day, but it is not every day that we realize we have witnessed one.”

Witnessing Everyday Miracles
By Sofia Balcorta

It was a Saturday very similar to others that I had lived through before. I had First Eucharist Celebration Mass at 2:00 pm and needed to be in the Hall of St. Patrick’s Church at 1:30 pm in order to take attendance and give First Eucharist pins to the 8 children in my group.
I had been in the Hall early in the morning in order to set up for the Reception after the Celebration. Tables were placed nicely in the middle of the Hall with yellow napkins on either side to give some color and helium balloons in the middle of the table to make this occasion extra special. Lemonade was prepared, coffee was ready to go, and all signs were strategically placed for parents to find their way into the Hall.
I went back home and fixed some early lunch for my children, scrambled eggs and toast, went upstairs to my closet and grabbed something that looked nicer than usual, brushed my teeth, fixed my hair, kissed my husband goodbye and off I went back to St. Patrick’s.
I had trouble going downstairs with my heels, like I always do, and headed into the Father Doucet Room beside the Hall. The children slowly started to arrive and suddenly the room was filled with girls in white dresses, nervous boys and parents taking pictures all over the place.
One beautiful blonde girl caught my attention. She was the first girl in my group, and she was sitting still which is quite unusual for a seven-year-old child.
“Are you okay?”, I asked.
“Yes”, she said.
“Are you nervous?”, I added.
“Not really, I’m just reeaaalllyyy HUNGRY”
“Did you have breakfast this morning?”
“I did. But I haven’t had lunch yet. I can smell all the cookies and cupcakes outside. It is making me even hungrier!” she said, while making little jumps in her chair.
“I know they smell good; I am hungry myself. But do you remember we talked about getting ready for Mass? We should not eat anything an hour before Mass. It’s called fasting.”
“I know. But I am sooo hungry. I can’t take it anymore!”
“Let’s do something, as soon as we come downstairs after the First Communion Mass, I will let you grab a snack while you wait for mom and dad. Deal?”
“Ok”, she said with a disappointed look in her face.
Things started to settle and suddenly all children were checked in with pins and all. Our line walked out of the Father Doucet Room and into the hall toward the stairs.
The Mass continued and everyone looked great. Most of the children forgot to bow as they approached the priest to receive their First Communion, but it always happens like that.
At last the closing hymn started and the children processed outside the church followed by the Priest and Altar Servers. As I was walking downstairs with difficulty, I realized I had left my phone in the pew upstairs as I didn’t have a pocket to put it in. “Really Sofia! I will have to go get it after all the children in my group have been picked up. One more trip up the stairs!”, I thought.
As I came into the Hall, I told the blonde girl to have a snack. She looked at me, so I knew she had heard me. She didn’t take one though which made me wonder. As we got into the Father Doucet Room all the children sat down on their chairs as I handed out their First Communion Certificate. I approached the blond girl and gave her the Certificate. As I did this, I said, “You were so good in Mass, you can take a snack. After a whole hour you must be STARVING!”
“You know what?”, she said as she moved her legs back and forth. “I’m actually not hungry anymore.”
“Really? That’s different! After a whole hour you are not hungry anymore?” I asked.
She kept moving her legs back and forth and she said to me, “Nope! I guess the bread was enough for me!”
I stood in awe as I realized the Miracle I had just witnessed. Once all the children were picked up, I went upstairs to the church to retrieve my phone. As I did so I thanked God for the gift he had just given me.