I don’t often volunteer to do sewing projects for other people, but I was more than willing to make an exception for this project. We are so happy to have the “Catechisis of the Good Shepherd” catechism program available to our children. It is a program based of of the work Maria Montessori that guides the children on their spiritual path to knowing and understanding our loving God, and the richness of our Catholic faith.
Our local program is always short on volunteers, but with so many children underfoot (and now with my injury) I am not in a place to volunteer my time in “the atrium.” I realized this summer that I could help in a different way, and I offered my sewing skills in anyway that it would help their classroom.
The children spend part of their time at workstations, and I was given the task to make miniature priest vestments for a learning meditation. For this activity, the child follows a booklet to dress a mannequin in priestly garments. They learn the name of each piece, it’s meaning, and read excerpts from the prayers said while the priest is “vesting” before the Mass. Through this “work”,” they are learning parts of our religious tradition while going through a meditation. so beautiful.
Let’s talk details. The catechist leader provided an androgynous 10 inch velvet-covered dress form that these pieces where designed for. (I can’t even imagine how hard it was to find a masculine decorative mannequin. If anyone has helpful links, shoot me an email.)
Note: These are child-friendly paraphrases of the actual vesting prayers. Read more about the vesting prayers here.
Symbol of Purity
“Lord, give me strength to conquer the temptations of the devil.”
Symbol of Purity of Soul and Body
“O Lord, make my heart clean.”
Symbol of Chastity
“Give me, O Lord, the grace to keep myself pure.”
Symbol of the Clerical Office and Immortality
“Give me, O Lord, the help to be able to come to you in heaven.”
Symbol of Charity
“Give me, O Lord, the grace to serve you faithfully.”
I wish I had known about these beautiful prayers as a child. It make me happy that my children are learning about them.
Because I know I will be asked, I will not be making any more of these sets for sale, or writing up a polished pattern or tutorial. However, I have scanned the pattern pieces and put them together with some project notes. I hope they can help other catechism classes or families in teaching there children.
Again, this is not the full pattern write up like my other patterns, but there should be enough information for an experienced or adventurous sewer to make their own set.