Thursday, February 10, 2011

Feast of St. Scholastica

As a graduate of Benedictine College in Atchison, KS I feel it my particular duty to celebrate the Feast of St. Scholastica with as much fun and enthusiasm as possible... which I do happily.

St. Scholastica is the twin sister of St. Benedict. What did those parents do right?

One of the most famous stories of the pair is about a night that St. Benedict came to make his yearly visit. After dinner he refused to stay any longer, despite the pleading of his sister to continue their conversation about the joy of heaven. So St. Scholastica bowed her head to pray. As soon as she lifted it the once clear sky struck with thunder and a massive storm began, preventing St. Benedict from leaving until the next day.

Three days after their visit St. Benedict looked to the sky and saw his sister's soul leaving the earth in the form of a dove. Overjoyed he called upon some of his brothers to retrieve her body for burial in the tomb he had prepared for himself.

For these reasons St. Scholastica is the patroness of storms and is often pictured with a dove.

After the kids nap we read The Holy Twins: Benedict and Scholastica by Tomie DePaola, which Kevin found at a consignment sale that was run by mothers with twins, very fitting.

After the book Bean was inspired to create her own special feast day snack. In the book it says "Scholastica... was eager to help fulfill Jesus' command to feed and clothe the poor and to tend the sick." So her idea was to make doctor kits using graham crackers, pretzels and frosting for our snack.

Pal's reminds me a bit of Stone Hedge.

We also made some origami doves. If you pull their tails their wings flap. Highly entertaining. 

For instructions on how to make an origami dove (well, they call it a bird) check out this great youtube tutorial

If you have ever eaten dinner at a Benedictine monastery you know that during the meal a portion of the Rule of St. Benedict is read. The Rule covers all of the norms of monastic life, so sometimes the topics are quite humorous for dinner conversation. When I was at Benedictine I went to the Mount (where the sisters live) for dinner almost every week to meet with my prayer partner, Sr. Paula. She is quite the amazing woman. At the age of 70 she started writing icons. WHAT?!?!, right. Pretty incredible. Here she is in her studio.

Anyway, point being, of course we read some of the rule during dinner! The kids wanted to learn about "The Porter", who is in charge of welcoming guests, and "The Tools and Goods of the Monastery".

Finally after dinner we made a stormy sea float for our patroness of storms.

Just dye some sprite blue and add vanilla ice cream for some awesome foam. My kids just LOVE these. You can also use these for many bible stories, like Jonah and Jesus calming the sea or walking or water.

St. Benedict and St. Scholastica, Pray for us!


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