The kids are out of school and our fast-paced lives centered on school and youth sports activities have slowed down. Our own internal clocks are now on summer time. We’re ready for a break from our hectic lives.
And while we take vacations and enjoy the leisurely pace of the season, we need to remember that summer is not the time to take a vacation from God. In fact, summer can serve as the perfect opportunity to grow in our relationship with God, especially since most of us have considerably more free time.
So, instead of neglecting our faith due to busy days and late nights, try these simple steps to embrace God during the quieter summer months and during your vacation.
Get More Active in a Parish Ministry
The summer is actually a perfect time to get more involved in a parish ministry. Because we no longer have to get the kids to and from school, or get them to sporting events or other activities that normally occur during the school year, our schedules are a bit less cluttered. Summer is indeed a perfect time to fill some downtime with service to God through ministry and giving of your talents. Take a look through the parish ministries to find something that suits your particular interest or talent.
Vacation Bible School, for Kids and Adults
Vacation Bible School is a great way for younger children to learn about God through songs, activities and fellowship. The fun-filled lessons build upon Gospel teachings while keeping kids’ attention. For older children, it is a great opportunity to offer service by being a team leader or assistant. Adults can also help plan, decorate, organize and teach during the week. It’s a wonderful activity for the entire family!
Give Thanks for the Sun
Praise God for the sun, time off from school and easygoing days by visiting the adoration chapel to say a quick prayer. Bring a journal or rosary along to help stay focused. Little children can even bring a religious coloring book to give thanks to God on their terms. Or, before heading to the pool, why not attend daily Mass with the kids? It’s a perfect way to start the day and set the tone that — vacation or not — God is still an important part of your family life.
Don’t Take a Vacation from Mass
Often while on a vacation away from our parish family, we are not familiar with where to attend Mass. Don’t let that be an obstacle for you. Check out masstimes.org in order to find out where and when to go to Mass. In addition, if you are lodging at a hotel, the concierge will assist you with directions to the nearest Catholic Church.
Summertime Stewardship of Treasure
The prime reason for keeping up our pledge all summer is that God doesn’t go on vacation. He continues to sustain us throughout the summer months. He persists in pouring out blessings on us, even during the hottest weather. He keeps on meeting us in His sacramental presence when we go to Mass wherever we travel. As God remains faithful to us during the summer, we are called to be faithful in our commitments to Him and our parish family, even during our vacation time.
So, enjoy the warmer temperatures and the relaxed atmosphere. Just don’t forget Who provides the sun and the sand! And most importantly, remember to take God with you wherever you go on vacation!