11 Catholic Activities for Families

Advent is a season of preparation. These Advent activities will help your whole family prepare for Christmas and help everyone remember the true meaning of the season! To avoid become too hurried and rushed during this season, choose just one or two activities that work best for your family.

1. DIY Advent Wreath

It’s easy to make your own Advent wreath! And once complete you can use it with these Advent Wreath Prayers each Sunday.

Download DIY Advent Wreath Instructions

2. DIY Advent Calendar 

An Advent calendar helps your family mark off each day until Christmas. Each box is filled with daily inspiration that will help your kids grow through Bible verses, reflections, and holiday fun! Begin on December 1st.

Create Your Own Advent Calendar!

3. Celebrate the Saints

December 6 is the Feast of St. Nicholas and December 13 is the Feast of St. Lucy - and both of these days have fun traditions! Children typically leave a pair of shoes or a stocking out the evening of December 5 to receive candy or a small gift from St. Nicholas. On December 13, the oldest daughter (or a willing participant) serves a sweet treat to the family in honor of St. Lucy. Tell the stories of these saints to help your family learn about the holy people who came before us!

Celebrate These Feast Days

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4. Sing Christmas Carols

Did you know that some Christmas carols, like The Twelve Days of Christmas, actually have Catholic roots? Listen to songs about Jesus’ birth and then talk about the imagery as a family. Some great options include O Holy Night, Silent Night, Away in a Manger, and O Come O Come Emmanuel.

5. Give God Time Every Day

The best way to prepare your heart is through prayer. Pray at least once daily as a family. You can pray the Advent Prayer for the Family or even reflect on each day’s BEST ADVENT EVER video during your prayer time!


6. Did Someone Say Candy Cane?

A candy cane looks like a shepherd’s crook. The white represents the purity of Jesus’ birth and the red represents the suffering on the cross. And when turned upside down, a candy cane makes the letter “J” for Jesus! Hang candy canes on your Christmas tree and use that time to read the Nativity Story found in the Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke (Hint - Luke’s account contains the shepherds!).

7. DIY Jesse Tree

Named after King David’s father Jesse, a Jesse Tree helps kids understand the stories of the Old Testament through stories and pictures. Start on December 1 and hang an ornament each day!

Download the Jesse Tree Instructions

Download Printable Ornaments

8. The Advent of Christmas

Read books about Advent and Christmas with your children. One option is The Advent of Christmas by Matt Maher. Perfect for families to read aloud, the memorable rhymes and colorful illustrations will help children experience for themselves the peace and joy of the holiday season.

Buy the Book

9. Share the Season

Christmas can be a hard time for many, especially those who have lost a loved one. Visit someone who is lonely - you can sing carols at a Nursing Home or even drop off homemade cookies and cards to an elderly neighbor. 

10. Dedicate One Night for Family

It’s easy for December to disappear in a rush. Choose at least one night in December for an at-home family night. Watch a Christmas movie, drink eggnog, or simply talk about your favorite Christmas memories and why Advent is meaningful for you.

11. Sing Happy Birthday to Jesus

Have a small birthday party for Jesus on Christmas Day! You can sing Happy Birthday and enjoy a sweet treat - angel food cake might be appropriate. 

Learn More About Advent


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