The most deeply appreciated Catholic gifts are those which the giver has selected with thoughtfulness. This results in showing that she carefully considered what present would benefit the recipient and what would be special to that person. When selecting the ideal Catholic gifts, they should perfectly match the recipient and not be mass-produced toys or gadgets. Rather, they serve a deeper purpose and are timeless. Keepsakes that will be valued and prized for years, even generations to come.
Reason 1: To evangelize and bear witness to God’s Revelation in Jesus through the Holy Spirit
"To evangelize, one bears witness to God’s Revelation in Jesus through the Holy Spirit by living a life imbued with Christian virtues…" – Pope Paul VI
There are countless ways to evangelize those the Lord places in our path. We don't need to travel to another continent and live a missionary's life to be effective evangelizers. It starts at home, in our own families. Surrounding ourselves and our loved ones with the beauty and rich traditions of our Church makes striving daily to learn more about our Faith. This also helps us to abide with Jesus more attainable.
The statue of Mary in the front yard's flower bed, the crucifix around your neck, the St. Tarcisius medal you bestow on your grandson for his First Holy Communion. As a result, these reminders share the Faith with others in a quiet yet powerful way, without traveling anywhere.
Reason 2: As the family goes, so goes the nation and the whole world
"As the family goes, so goes the nation and the whole world." - Pope St. John Paul II
Our primary responsibility as Catholics is the love and formation of our children, to help our children and future generations get to Heaven. Parents are the primary teachers in the family, and grandparents hold a special position of reverence and admiration. Countless times, when reminiscing about their grandparents, men and women recollect attending Mass with grandma, grandpa's bedside Bible, the rosary beads clutched in a favorite aunt's hands.
When the younger generations absorb wisdom from their elders, the foundation of that wisdom is based in the one true Faith. Most importantly, shower your younger family members with gifts because this will seal their memories of your love for Christ. As a result, you will help spark their own hearts for Jesus.
Reason 3: Actions speak louder than words
"Actions speak louder than words; let our words teach and your actions speak." - St. Augustine
Certainly teachers everywhere know that adult and child students learn best by doing, by practicing, and by hands-on experience. Accordingly, this principle also applies to learning our Faith as well! An exquisite rosary brings the familiar prayers to life; a personalized Catholic Bible beckons the young child to read its pages; a home filled with Catholic art truly feels like a domestic church.
Our faith must not be kept private therefore it must be shared. Catechesis is most effective when the student is an active participant rather than a passive sponge. Putting real-life tools like books, art, and sacramentals in our living space enlivens study and love of the Faith for young and old alike.
Reason 4: Catholic Gifts Feed the Soul
"You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body." – C.S. Lewis
Jesus fed people who were physically hungry, for the reason that His primary goal was to feed the spiritually hungry. When considering a gift for a loved one, envision that person as a soul who happens to be in a human body. Seek to feed that person's soul with a gift so you can convey to the participant that you care first and foremost for his spiritual wellbeing. Maybe there is a particular saint your relative or friend has a special devotion to; encourage that spiritual friendship with a patron saint medal. A special wall cross for the new baby in the family demonstrates your excitement to welcome the baby into the family of God at Baptism. An auto rosary or guardian angel visor clip reminds a frequent traveler that you care for both his spiritual as well as physical well bring.
Above all, the Holy Spirit provides limitless opportunities to evangelize those around us. Birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, and sacraments are all special events which results in us being able to share our Faith in a generous and unique way. Therefore, this may even bring our friends and family members closer to the Lord!