While searching online for a craft idea for an All Saints Day party, Lacy Rabideau found the faith-based pickings slim.
She perused multiple sites with one misguided idea after another, including one that touted a “Baptize Barbie” game. After fruitless searching, Lacy, 27, realized that parents and teachers who wanted to engage and enrich their children’s faith needed a user-friendly and kid-focused Catholic resource.
And although the mother of four, home educator, designer, author, and speaker did not have much free time, she knew that "God doesn't call the qualified, he qualifies the called." And so, her blog Catholic Icing was born.
Below, Lacy answers a few of our questions.
Your blog Catholic Icing is a resource for parents who want to grow their children’s faith through crafts. How did you feel it would differ from other crafting and Catholic websites?
At the time I started Catholic Icing, I had already been blogging at secular craft blogs for awhile. There were a few Catholic blogs at the time that provided Catholic crafting ideas, but they were not easy to navigate resource sites, nor were they easily found with Google searches. I wanted something user-friendly for parents that really specialized in Catholic resources for children, and since I couldn't find what I was looking for, I started one…[I wanted] to help people like me who did not grow up with Catholic traditions in their home, and didn't know where to start.
How do you think these crafts and creating art help children’s faith grow?
Children learn better when what they're learning about is engaging and relevant to them, so I think it's important to make learning about the faith interesting and fun. Each child is going to be different. The three major types of learners are visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. Crafts are great for visual and kinesthetic learners, and I do try to throw in a lot of fun music as well. I believe in hands-on learning. Teaching my children about our faith is important to me, so it seemed natural to combine these two passions.
What tips do you have for parents and teachers to incorporate these crafts into the lives of their children and students?
I suggest that parents start with the big feast days, like Christmas and Easter. Make the focus of these days about the true meaning, and be sure to work in Lent as well. Start with "doable" projects rather than getting overwhelmed with the craziness on Pinterest. Doing crafts is not quite as time-consuming and messy as you might think, and especially on Catholic Icing, all the projects have already been tried out with real children. When something doesn't work out well, it doesn't make it to my site.
What do you hope to accomplish with your blog, both for children and for their parents using it as a resource?
Children are literally the future of the church, and I want to help everyone working with Catholic children to make the faith engaging and accessible for children. I hope for children to have their faith so interwoven into their lives that it could never be plucked out like a puzzle piece. I want them to love their rich faith, and the Catholic Church, because it is more than dressing up in uncomfortable clothes and sitting still for 1 hour per week—it's interesting, fun, and something to be excited about!
How does maintaining Catholic Icing help grow your own spirituality?
I have grown so much spiritually since starting this blog because I am learning so much about the faith myself! I also started going to a women's Bible study this year that provides a free nursery for all the children, and it has been amazing! Sometimes, I do think that mothers need to be reminded to do something for themselves once in awhile.