Calling all Little Flowers and Blue Knights!

Calling all Little Flowers and Blue Knights…past and present! Will we meet you in Indianapolis? Come and get your free gift!

We are so excited to be joining the tens of thousands of Catholics gathering in Indianapolis next week

for the Eucharistic Congress. Are you getting ready to “Be there when God MOVES?” Both Joan

and I are looking to “Come in Faith. Leave with Hope.”

What a wonderful time to introduce all of our clubs – Little Flowers, Blue Knights and more – to

new families. But, even more so, what a joy it will be to meet any and all of you.

Is your family going on pilgrimage to the Eucharistic Congress? If you are, please come find us

in the Vendor area. We will be in Booth 232.

Give-aways for Everyone!

We will have small giveaways to everyone who comes to our booth by BUT if you wear your

sash or proudly display other Behold Club gear, pins, scarves, t-shirt, tote bag, etc. we will have

something extra special for you. Want to know what it is? You will just have to find us to find out!

Stop by, say hello! Let us meet in person for perhaps the first time. The gift of the Eucharistic

Congress is something the entire Church is celebrating and we are glad to be able to be a part

of it. But, this historical gathering would be made even more special if we could MEET YOU!

Even if you haven’t been in Little Flowers or Blue Knights recently, dig out that sash or breastplate, button or t-shirt and show us how our Catholic Clubs helped you grow holier one virtue at a time!

(if you are in a position to help off-set our costs there is still time to donate. Please follow this

link : https://catalog.beholdpublications.com/product/donate/?v=2320522a6676…)

Joan and Rachel

Be A Lot Cooler if You Did…

I have been asked if a Mom can run a Blue Knights Club; and of course I answer “Yes.”  But as Matthew McConaughey said in the 1993 movie Dazed and Confused; it would be better if it was run by a Dad. In ancient Israel, it was the father’s duty to ensure the faith was handed on to the next generation.  The Boo k of Isaiah tells us that:  

Fathers declare to their sons O God, thy faithfulness (38:19 )

Most boys will have female teachers in grade school and female teachers in Religious Education classes in the parish.  They can be excused for thinking that all of this is not important to the menfolk.  Sadly, that is often the case; so that the moms are stepping into the void.

There is nothing masculine about playing golf while the wife and kids are at Mass.  The Church Fathers who endured torture and imprisonment to keep the faith alive in the Roman empire certainly understood Christianity as rugged adventure.  It is time to for Catholic men to embrace that view again.

Boys learn to be men by watching what Dad does- what are you modeling to your kids?

Learn more about Blue Knights Boys’ Club or how to start one here: https://beholdpublications.com/home/about-our-clubs/blue-knights-boys-club/

A Boy and a Stick

Dan McGuire, creator of The Blue Knights Boys’ Club

The Boy and His Stick in Nature

A famous axiom of St. Thomas Aquinas is: Grace does not destroy nature; rather it builds on and perfects it.  What the Angelic Doctor was trying to convey is that God works with our natural inclinations to leads us back to Himself.  I think of this when I see pictures of my grandson (15 months old) with his stick. Every time he goes for a walk he carries a stick that he finds along the way.  I chuckle because I still have a walking stick I found 3 years ago when I was exploring the woods near our new home, not unlike the boy and his stick.  Boys will pick up a stick and it can become anything in their imagination – but quite often it is a weapon: a club, a sword, a gun…even a magic wand.  It becomes an extension of his own power. 

Blue Knights Boys’ Club and Formation

This is why one of the most popular of the Blue Knights crafts is the sword of respect for authority.  Boys gravitate towards the sword (and the spear, and bow/arrows) because it is a means of increasing or projecting power.  Of course, they don’t understand it that way.  That is why they need a Dad to take that nascent and natural urge and mold it along the proper path.  Formation of the man is what drives the Blue Knights. Explicitly it is about Dads forming their sons in virtue and faith.  It is also about forming the Dads at the same time.

Growing Up in a House Where Virtue Lives

Real girls exercising virtue in real life

Many of you are probably familiar with the Wreath I Virtue Stories. It contains nine short stories, one for each virtue in Wreath I, exemplifying how that virtue can be lived, learned, and nurtured through everyday interactions. What you may not realize is that all of those stories are based on real events. My mom, Joan Stromberg, wrote those stories, and as the oldest child I remember many of them myself. Sometimes she alters names or the exact sequence of events, but the basic stories really happened. Growing up in a house with ten kids provided many opportunities to practice virtue, and I was blessed to be surrounded by parents and siblings who nurtured and exemplified those virtues.

What’s better than virtue stories? More virtue stories!

If you do know and love those stories, I have great news for you. Wreath II Virtue Stories are finally here! Now there are nine more short, beautiful little tales written by my mom, showing how young girls can (and do) live lives of virtue in the ways they interact with their friends, family, and everyone else that is part of their daily lives. This time, the book is illustrated by the incredibly talented Michelle Mahnke, who also illustrates all the Little Flowers Student Guides. Get your copy now and inspire your girls to live virtuously!

Share your stories of virtue

Do you have inspiring tales of how your Little Flower, Blue Knight, or other Catholic club member has exemplified virtue? Share it with us! We love hearing about how these programs help kids (and their parents) grow in holiness. Get involved with our Facebook page, Instagram, or comment below to share your virtue stories too.

Are you able to help us get to the Eucharistic Congress?

get to the Eucharistic Congress

We are so pleased to announce that we have been invited as an exhibitor to the upcoming Eucharistic Congress in July! This is such good news as we will be able to share Little Flowers, Blue Knights and all of the Behold Clubs with families from all over the country.

Being present at this event would be wonderful as we introduce the families present with our Catholic to Core programs with over 30 years of presenting authentic Catholic teaching, virtue, saints and so much more. 

There are other choices of clubs/organizations that will also be there but nothing like Little Flowers and Blue Knights.

Can you help make sure we get to the Eucharistic Congress?

This is huge news but – as with many such things – it comes at a cost. May we be forward enough to ask for your help to get to the Eucharistic Congress?

We are hoping for help in covering the exhibitor registration fee and travel costs.

Check out this link:  https://catalog.beholdpublications.com/product/donate/?v=2320522a6676

If you are able to help us in any other manner, a different amount or otherwise please let us know!

Thank you for considering our request. We are grateful for all of you! God Bless, Rachel & Joan

Little Flowers Girls' Club

Happy Mother’s Day

As my busy weekend starts, I want to wish all of you a very Happy Mother’s Day! As our very own St. Therese of Liseaux reminds us, “The loveliest masterpiece of the heart of God is the heart of a mother.”

And her own mother, St. Zelie shares this wisdom, “Above all, during the months immediately preceding the birth of her child, the mother should keep close to God, of whom the infant she bears within her is the image, the handiwork, the gift and the child. She should be for her offspring, as it were, a temple, a sanctuary, an altar, a tabernacle. In short, her life should be, so to speak, the life of a living sacrament, a sacrament in act, burying herself in the bosom of that God who has so truly instituted it and hallowed it, so that there she may draw that energy, that enlightening, that natural and supernatural beauty which he wills, and wills precisely by her means, to impart to the child she bears and to be born of her.”

That is much to ponder. I know I fall short of the motherhood as reflected by the life of the Blessed Mother and the wisdom as shared by St. Zelie, but I also know of God’s mercy and admiration for our attempts and tries. So to all you beautiful mothers out there, Happy Mother’s Day!

Extra love and prayers to those mothers for whom Sunday will be hard due to loss. Our Blessed Mother understands our pain in a unique way. My Rosary will be said for all of us.

Patron Saints for Virtue Education

What is a patron saint?

A patron saints is simply a saint that has a special meaning to a person, a place or an activity. I personally have several patron saints. St. Joan of Arc is my name patron, but my Confirmation name is Dominica, so I consider St. Dominic a patron saint, too. Places can also have a patron saint. St. Joan of Arc is a patroness of France, along with St. Therese, who is also our patron saint of Little Flowers Girls’ Club®. St. Joseph is the patron saint of a whole list of people, places and things like: patron of the Universal Church, patron of families, patron of fathers, patron of workers and patron of a happy death.

How does a saint become a patron saint?

Usually, a saint patronage develops over time and has something to do with how he lived. For example, St. Thomas Aquinas was a scholar and doctor of the church, so he is the patron saint of students. St. Christopher’s story tells about how he carried the child Jesus through a river, so he is the patron saint of travelers. There are so many different saint stories that you could find a patron saint for just about anything! Here’s a fun list: https://www.catholic.org/saints/patron.php

How can we use patron saints in virtue education?

Think of how many different people there are in the world. Each one has their own strengths, interests, and own path to get to heaven. There are no two people alike just like there are no two saints alike. We can look to the saints to glean from their lives how they practiced virtue in order to grow in holiness. For example, St. Joan of Arc is not only the patroness of France, she is also our patron saint for the Little Flower Girls’ Club® virtue of obedience (Wreath I). When we look at her life, we can see how she practiced the virtue of obedience heroically and learn to imitate that to become more holy.

Patron Saint badges and a Catholic World View

Our patron saints did not just practice one virtue, however, they practices many on their paths in this life towards heaven. Our Catholic Club patron saint badges reflect the Catholic world view that our saints practiced to obtain holiness. I would encourage you to incorporate these badges in your Catholic clubs next year and help to make your own clubs more well-rounded, fun and exciting! These badges are very easy to learn and incorporate in any club you lead…Little Flowers, Blue Knights, Hospitality or even our new program, The Little Way. Check out our patron saint badges today!

Craft Ideas and News – April Leader’s Meeting

craft ideas for Little Flowers

We covered a few things during this month’s meeting including our fundraising effort to get to the Eucharistic Congress in July. We talked about planning end of year ceremonies and/or parties. And we invited you to come to Little Flowers Camp! But we especially talked about craft ideas.

Crafts can be a wonderful addition to your meetings if you have members who like to do them and a parent/older teen ready to help. Some leaders feel as if they are a struggle as they don’t feel they are crafty enough to do it successfully.

Most of our virtues don’t lend themselves to a specific ‘craft’. That is not the purpose of virtues or our programs! It is important to remember the craft is meant to be a visual reminder of the virtue, its saint and flower along with the Scripture verse to be memorized. The crafts can be hung in their bedroom, decorate the house or even given away to someone they love.

With a few small changes most crafts would be great for any virtue, any month. These transformations are easy to do by having the members write the virtue and the saint on the craft. They can add the flower and Scripture verse and even incorporate the virtue’s color on the craft. For younger ones you can make copies of these to be cut out and glued on. Flower stickers, saints’ holy cards, religious stickers, etc. can be used for embellishments and before you know it – You have just made a Behold Club member craft!

From the list of 50 Crafts below, I have found 18 that seem to the easiest to transform –

https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/craft-ideas/g39762537/crafts-for-kids/

My Craft Choices

These are my choices that are the easiest to adapt. The numbers listed are for the number of the craft on the list and are NOT out of order. 🙂

Craft #1. Embellished Bow – ribbon is virtue color, add verses with sharpie marker, even attach a saint’s holy card?

  1. Monster Sock? How about Saint Sock? Use the virtue color, add the essential information. These can decorate their room or even be hung outside?
  2. Paper Bag Kite. Like the monster sock above.
  3. Cardboard Suns. Could the sun become cardboard flowers? Make them smaller, adding the important details?
  4. Candles! These could be done as pillar candles as well. You can print out the scripture verses, etc. to pin at the bottom of a pillar candle. Just be sure to remove it if the candle is going to be lit.
  5. Toilet paper or paper towel roll. Print out the Scripture verse, etc. in fancy print to be glue onto the roll. They can be painted in the virtue color or covered with construction paper.
  6. FAVORITE! Have them make the sun catchers and then they can write the verse, etc. on them with a dark marker. You can cut them into the shape of a heart, dove, chalice & host or monstrance.
  7. Bunny Bags become a club bag. Does someone have cricut machine to make a rose, St. Therese or other saint image? Each virtue, saint and scripture verse can be added throughout the year.
  8. Could the octopus become a flower? Or make them the Sun/Son with verse on the circle? Saint’s name on one of the sticks?
  9. We have done the flip flops with the verse, saint written around the edge of the shoe rather on the top. There a number of Scriptures about walking with God you can add (Micah 6:8).
  10. Animal Bookmarks become saints with holy cards or flowers or verses.
  11. Water Bottle Flowers – they can write the verses, saint, etc. on the petals. One might be enough.
  12. Heart Collage can be made into a flower shape easily or leave as it, add the verse and saint to small pieces of paper to add. Put a magnet on the back and on the fridge it goes or add a pin on the back to wear, put on a jacket or backpack.
  13. FAVORITE! Matisse Felt Board. Did you know he made a Stations of the Cross? https://aleteia.org/2018/10/11/the-catholic-chapel-that-was-designed-by-the-artist-matisse/ Felt flowers, crosses, doves, other Catholic images could be cut out and used.
  14. Salt Dough Hangers – In addition to the hearts, do you have flower cookie cutters?
  15. Glue Blobs – use sharpies to add the saint, verse and virtue after the glue has dried.
  16. Butterfly – Flower shape?
  17. Felt Hair Ties in color of virtue.

More Favorite Craft Idea Sites

Another favorite site for inspiration – https://modpodgerocksblog.com They have great ideas for paper plates as well!

Finally, in regard to crafts you might consider reaching out to local nursing homes, retirement homes for religious, etc. to see if the members’ lovely creations might be welcomed to add some color and cheer to the home. Perhaps there is a lonely resident with no visitors who might like a new decoration each month.

Our other craft ideas & suggestions:

https://catalog.beholdpublications.com/?s=craft&post_type=product&v=2320522a6676

God Bless and know you are in our prayers!

Image: Unsplash.com/ dragos-gontariu

Little Flowers/Blue Knights Leader Chat!

Joan us Friday for a zoom Little Flowers/Blue Knights Leader Chat with Joan and Rachel, the creator of Little Flowers Girls’ Clubs® as we talk about end of the year ceremonies, the Eucharistic Congress, and getting ready for summer! Rachel will also be discussing her favorite ideas for crafts, May Mary Crownings, and prayer ceremonies. Don’t miss it!

Every participant gets a free Mother Cabrini coloring book!

Hope to see you Friday for the Leader Chat!

Click here to join meeting at 2 pm EST on Friday, April 26, 2024.

Want to find out more about Little Flowers Girls’ Club? Click here.

Want to find out more about Blue Knights Boys’ Club? Click here.

Can’t make the Little Flowers/Blue Knights Leader Chat this month? No worries! the zoom will be recorded or you can join us again next month!