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The Perfect Catholic Mini-Retreat for Tween Girls
If you are a Youth Minister, Religious Education teacher or Catechist, Catholic School teacher or Catholic Homeschooling mom, this retreat is ideal for girls ages 10 to 14.
The purpose of this retreat is to encourage young girls to explore their identity in Christ. This time will allow each young lady to:
*see herself as a child of God who is loved immensely and that God created her on purpose and with a purpose.
*discover that she is unique and unrepeatable and she is called to be a joyful saint.
*reassure her that her prayers are heard and matter.
*be encouraged to talk to God more frequently in prayer.
What you will need:
Be Yourself Journals (1 for each retreat attendee)
A basket of holy cards
You may have a stash of these – ask around, many people have them and may not mind donating them!
DaySpring has a great line with Paper Pads
The Delight in His Day Paper Pad includes 24 patterned sheets (solid color on reverse side) that are great for this. Also 8 by 8 scrapbooking paper will also work.
Glue and Scissors
Phone/speaker to play Christian music in the background
(And materials for optional wrap up activity – the Just for fun Scavenger Hunt would be – individually wrapped gum; yarn or bracelet making thread; a box of band-aids; a bag of hard candy; leftover stickers)
To keep this retreat “Covid safe”; you can create a Retreat package for each attendee. Give extra supplies so each girl will have a choice with what she will use and what she will not use. For example, have a few sheets of scrapbooking paper – she will only need one; 3 or 4 holy cards – she can pick which one she will use, etc.
This retreat can be done using social distancing!!!
Gathering and Opening Prayer
Start off by giving each young lady her book and supplies. Allow them to peruse the book and other fun craft items.
When everyone has settled into their seats, begin with a prayer.
Prayer to Know God’s Will
Lord grant that I may always allow myself to be guided by You, always follow your plans, and perfectly accomplish your holy will. Grant that in all things, great and small, today and all the days of my life, I may do whatever You may desire of me. Help me to respond to the slightest promptings of your grace, so that I may be your trustworthy instrument. May your will be done in time and eternity, by me, in me, and through me. Amen.
-St. Therese of Lisieux
Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth.
O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, Through Christ Our Lord,
FIRST: The Leaders of the Retreat . . . introduce yourself!!!!
Talk a little bit about how your faith has helped you in your life!
Tell the girls what you like to do,
how you prefer to pray and
who your favorite saint is!
Direct the girls to look at and fill out the ” Your Beauty Basics” page. Encourage them to also fill out the God’s Creation page.
Play some music in the background.
After about 5 minutes, ask the girls to share some or all of the responses they wrote in their journal.
Then, tell the girls to turn the page of the journal back to see:
God created you body and soul.
God created everything for you but you in turn were created to serve and love God and to offer all creation back to Him.
As a fun way for the girls to get to know one other better, encourage them to fill out God’s Creation and You and the Would You Rather Game.
Go over the “Would You Rather” Game as a group and encourage them to make some additional “Would You Rather” nature fun questions.
Share with the girls that each one of them is unique and unrepeatable. God calls each one to be holy but we all have different paths and our roads will look different.
It’s extremely important to pray every day and receive the Blessed Sacrament at least once a week. Right now, God wants us to love Him first, avoid sin and, as Saint Katharine Drexel once said:
“Peacefully do at each moment what needs to be done.”
If we are looking for more guidance in our life, Scripture and the Saints have a ton of advice. We also can call on Saints to pray for us!
Direct the girls attention to their packet of supplies and the back of the book.
Let the girls know that they will start by picking a background design paper.
Explain they are going to create a scrapbook collage to be the back cover design.
The design should be all done on the background paper, then at the very end, the whole design on the scrapbooking paper and can be glued or washi-taped to the back cover.
Step One – Pick your background
Step Two – Choose a Holy Card for the center of the design.
Step Three- Choose a Scripture Quote or Saint Quote
Step Four- find stickers/images of things that make them feel grateful. Prayer should always include giving thanks. Stick on the images that fill their hearts with gratitude.
Step Five- finish the design with washi-tape, their own writing, a photo of themselves or however else they want to decorate it!
Closing Activity and Prayer:
Direct the girls’ attention to the back pages titled:
WHAT DOES ALL THIS HAVE TO DO WITH WHO I AM?
HOW DO I LOVE HIM BACK?
These pages are very brief but are really helpful.
Have the girls volunteer to read parts and ask them if they have any questions. Allow a guided group discussion. Remind them that faith and life is a journey and we learn something new everyday. Our relationship with God is like other relationships – the more we spend time with Him the more we will get to know Him.
The “Just For Fun Scavenger Hunt”
This is a simple activity to build self-esteem and friendship. Depending on what time allows, you can include it or omit it!
This can be the beginning of a series of group meetings – or a great way to jump start a personal prayer journaling habit for each young girl in attendance!
Since each young lady will be going home with a journal, you will be providing a resource she can turn to when she is worried, scared, confused or just simply in need of prayer time.
Want more ideas for Catholic tweens, Catholic gifts and simply be reassured God loves you and hears your prayers? If yes,