Our parish has 200 children receiving their First Communion in the next two weeks. We will have three Masses for the First Communicants. Here are a few ways that catechists and parents can help their child prepare for one of the most special days of their life!
1) Take the opportunity to live in the moment
Yes, there is lots to prepare for…dress clothes, gifts, invites to the party, groceries, a clean house, etc, etc… But don’t forget that is all secondary to helping your child be prepared and excited about receiving Jesus Christ body, blood, soul and divinity! As you share how wonderful Jesus is to receive and to always be close to Him the child in turn will be excited and seek to focus on being close to Jesus. Take many moments during the final days and share with excitement your love for Jesus and how Jesus helps you be holy, to be loving, to be patient. As they see how important Jesus is to you they will continue to grow as they receive Jesus every Sunday.
2. Make a Novena or pray a Rosary everyday for the one preparing for First Communion.
Prayer is powerful and full of God’s abundance. Take the time to pray and seek the floodgates of God’s life to be poured out to the child(ren) receiving First Communion.
3) Continue a life of Grace
It’s not about one special day in the 2nd or 3rd Grade. It’s the beginning of a marvelous friendship and abundant graces in ones life. It’s sad that so many who receive Jesus in 2nd or 3rd grade don’t go to Mass very often after their First Communion – if they only knew the treasure of graces. God knows how much we need Him and He wants to give Himself to us. He wants to form a constant foundation and give us a wellspring of grace and strength to draw from in our daily life. We need Jesus in the Eucharist so much – it’s our lifeline!
4. Go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation – i.e., Confession
Go to the font of mercy and have children receive the sacrament. Go to Confession so they can be cleansed of sins, even if it is just venial sin so they can be open to all the graces Jesus Christ has for them at their First Communion. Going to the Sacrament of Reconciliation opens one up to a more profound reception of Jesus in the Eucharist.