6 ways to Survive 10-hour Good Friday Service with your little kids.
Updated: Nov 10, 2020
Good Friday is almost here! I personally don't feel the joy of the Feast of the Resurrection until I live through the holy Pascha week, then Good Friday and obviously end it with Apocalypse night.
Last year, with my 3 year old I could barely enjoy a total of few hours of the entire Holy Week.
This year, I am determined to enjoy Holy week with her and hopefully, survive Good Friday together. Here are 6 things that I am planning to do that worked with me in the past. I hope they will also work with your family!
Go in with a new Mindset. It's OK if you don't enjoy the whole 10-hour service. You have little kids. They will not be this young forever. Soon they will grow older and you will be able to enjoy Good Friday again. For now, pick the best time for you and the kids to enjoy the service. This time frame of course includes your favorite prayers and the time when your kids will not be cranky, hyper, or whinny and can be occupied with the following 5 other ways to keep them busy.
Food. Lots of it with Variety! It's obvious that you will pack some snacks but don't forget you are spending breakfast and lunch in church. And you don't want to make a quick trip to McDonalds in the middle of service either. So pack enough for two meals and lots of snacks because your kid will be a very picky eater on this day. Remind your kids to step outside of church when theyare eating their snacks.
Pack your bag with little toys from #dollarTree or #99C store. I was shocked that my daughter would play for HOURS with $1 dollar toys and enjoy them more than the more expensive toys.Make a visit to these stores you will be surprised with the goodies you can get with just 5 bucks. Here are few items that my daughter loves to play with. We have also found a wonderful bible story collection: Bible games, Bible coloring Books, Pony with brush, puzzles, building blocks. I also add to the bag my daughter's dry erase activity book and Sacraments Quiet book that I have made for her.
Split time with spouse and family members. Make a plan with your family members and spouse where you will split the hours of the day among yourselves so you can spend a few hours focused and praying without interruption (if your'e the mom, HA! ya right!)
Take turns with other parents to watch the kids. If you have a crying room and your child can't sit still in church, great! make a plan with other parents where each parent takes a turn watching all the kids playing in the crying room while the rest of the parents are praying inside church. It's important, however, that the child spends some time inside of church to experience the beauty of this day and to take the blessings of the prayers.
Finally, take frequent breaks. Hopefully this, will help the kids not get bored easily.
May you have a blessed Holy Week and a joyful Feast of the Resurrection