Today we are very excited to share a post with you from our dear friend Rachel Muha. If you are not familiar with Rachel’s amazing work at The Run the Race Club – a non profit organization that seeks to spread a positive influence on society by helping inner-city young people you can read more here. Rachel is one of those women that helps you become a better person just by being in her presence. She is the ultimate example of living out the works of mercy in daily life. Today she shares that mercy isn’t just for moms – its for Grandmother too!!
Can I start off saying that the only joy that can be better than being a grandmother would be the joy of Heaven? Yes! It’s that wonderful. It’s a holy, moved-to-tears, joy-ful moment when you see a child of yours hold a child of his and you know the happiness that is welling up in his heart, which means your heart is twice as happy. Your child, grown up, and your grandchild, just born: God is so good to us, to let us see and savor life.
So, what’s a grandmother to do? Smother the baby with kisses, hold, rock, hug, smile at, take hundreds of pictures, pray for and love, love, love that little one? Yes.
Buy all the toys and cute little outfits ever made? Hover? Give unasked for advice? Try to take over? No. (As tempting as all that is…)
So, dear grandmothers, let’s keep the word “Catholic” in our names. Without going overboard, let’s give our little ones the Faith in a grandmotherly way.
What does that mean? Rocking chair rosaries? Yes! But I think there are some unique ways you can teach the Faith, too. Maybe you have thought of these but I will share them anyways.
- On the one year anniversary of your grandchild’s Baptism, give him/her a special Baptism Book with pictures of the church, the priest, the Baptism, the Godparents, and the homily the priest gave. The homily? Yes – have someone (or you) record the homily on your phone and transcribe it. Add it to the baby’s Baptismal Book.
- Every year on the date of the child’s baptism, send him/her a special card or small gift. Add to the Baptism Book with stories about his/her namesakes, his Godparents’ and parents’ names, the history of the church he was baptized in, the life story of the priest who baptized him, etc.
- When your grandchild is as young as one year old, you can take him/her to church, before, during and after Mass. Point out the stained glass, the names of the saints, the Stations, the statues and more. Your grandchild will love that.
- Give your grandchild a set of church bells as a gift, or even children’s bells. He/she will probably make the association between the bells at church and the bells at home and watch his/her face when you gently ring them – priceless.
- My grandson loves the statues of St. Therese and St. Francis at his church. He asks to see pictures of them when he is at home and my son Chris pulls them up on the computer to show Luke. I took that as a cue and bought picture books about both saints for Luke.
- Luke just turned two the other day and I had an idea: a book of holy cards. I bought 23 laminated holy cards. I picked out St Joan and St. Christopher for his parents, St. Luke for himself, The Holy Family, Mary and St. Anne, the Divine Mercy, etc. I also picked out the patron saint of boys: St. Dominic Savio and saints important to Chris and Jean: St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, etc. I bought a holy card album from The Catholic Company online. The book has 24 slots. The holy cards have prayers on the back so they are visible when one turns the pages. But why did I buy only 23 cards? Because I put Luke’s picture in the last slot and told him he is with his Heavenly friends now and one day will live with them forever. He loves to sit with his grandmother and look at all of his friends. And his grandmother is filled with joy.
Copyright 2015, Rachel Muha
Rachel Muha is the mother of two and grandmother to one sweet little boy. She has spent her life in service to the church and founded The Brian Muha Memorial Foundation, Inc. and then The Run The Race Club, a ministry for inner city children and their families after the tragic murder of her son Brian in 1999. Rachel has been honored with many awards both locally and nationally for her amazing work including the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Award designated as an “Unsung Hero” recognized for her extraordinary and selfless volunteer work in the community. She speaks on forgiveness, The Death Penalty; Conquering Evil; Brian’s Story; and How To Have Fun and Not Lose Heaven.