For this week's tea & a craft, we focused on today's feast, The Chair of St. Peter. For "tea" we had hot milky cocoa in celebration of the snow (still falling fast and furious as I type) but no other treats were served. (We were all saving our "one sweet a day" for the cherry cobbler bubbling away in the crockpot!) We first read today's gospel, and then we read ahead for Sunday in our Magnifikid. And then, much to the boys surprise, I opened up my laptop ...
... for an online tour of St. Peter's Basilica!
The boys were fascinated by this floorplan:
We quickly found the Cathedra Petri on the map and opened its link:
The image of The Holy Spirit, in stained glass above the Altar is so striking.
I then remembered we had a great picture of the Basilica in one of our Discoveries books - it happens to be a fold-out multi-page section.
Next I pulled out a fun little paperback story, Lost in Peter's Tomb. Bookworm read this last year (and its sequel Break-in at the Basilica) but not Crackerjack. In fact, I had forgotten we had these books until just today! (You know, as much as I love to plan, half the time I'm making things up as we go, lol.)
Bookworm remembered a passage about the Chair of St. Peter in the book:
"There's another picture of a dove at the end of the church," observes an excited Delaney, pointing toward the very end of the basilica.
"Is that a giant's chair?" Delaney asks, seeing what looks like a chair floating in gold and silver clouds beneath the dove. Now Delaney is sure giants live here.
"That is the very famous and sacred 'Chair of Peter' or Cathedra Petri in Latin," says the workman.
"Did Peter actually sit in that chair?" questions Riley. "It looks awfully big. How big was Peter?"
"No, he wasn't a giant. Just a normal-sized person. I don't think he ever actually sat in that chair," answers the workman. "It looks to be about ten feet tall; much too big for the average man to sit in. That big chair more importantly symbolizing that this is the place where the head of the Church belongs. However, a chair that Peter really did sit in is enclosed inside that big bronze chair."
I've shared this craft method before - it's a very common one, and a favorite of mine. Easy for the boys to do too, if I prepare things ahead. It's just bits of colorful tissue paper stuck onto clear contact paper, around a printed out image, and all set within a construction paper frame.
Our finished product:
Which we added to our Lenten cross:
So far we have a panel for St. Valentine, and now one for the Chair of Peter. Over the next four weeks we'll add the rest of the panels, colorful images representing special days of the season. Come Easter Sunday our cross will be filled with color and light!
Well, our day has now come to a close. The snow is still falling, and here we sit together, savoring these steaming bowls of cherry cobbler and watching a wonderful movie. A fitting choice for this time of year, as we long for the return of the spring. :)
Have a wonderful weekend, my friends!