Parents, kids and Grandparents all give a big Thumbs Up to The Meal Box, a unique collection of faith-based conversation starters. Okay, we admit, this isn't exactly a game. But it is something families will enjoy doing together, whether at the dinner table or gathered around a cozy fire. It would be an especially meaningful way for visiting relatives who seldom get to enjoy your family to reconnect with the children. Also a special activity for Grandparents to have on hand for overnites with their grandchildren.
The easiest way to explain the 52 Servings of Faith & Fun is with some card examples, so here are afew:
Front: When it comes to things that make you really happy, what five things would you rank at the very top?
Back: When asked what it would take to get to heaven, Jesus said, "Feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, and clothe the naked." That's what parents do each day. It's a paradox that our greatest happiness comes when we freely give of our selves. Think about that the next time you're fixing supper or folding laundry.
Front: Suppose that, whenever you talked, it wouldn't be your voice that people heard - it would be the sound of a particular animal. Which animal's sound would you choose for your voice? (even little ones could answer that! There are a few like this that work for youngsters.)
Back: Eating meals together regularly as a family has many benefits. When children are heard and responded to during mealtime conversations, they discover their own voice. They gain the confidence and security that assures them they belong.
Front: If you had to complete the following sentence for each person in the room with you right now, how would you finish it? You are really special to me because…
Back: Whenever you speak about yourself or another family member, keep this in mind - we were created with love by a loving God. Practice praying Psalm 139: "You formed my inmost being; You knit me in my mother's womb. I praise You, so wonderful You made me; wonderful are Your works!"
As these examples illustrate, the eclectic mix of questions range from fun to thought provoking, with some questions that require reflection about oneself, and others to generate thoughtful responses about others.
Catholicity: FYI, although printed by a Catholic company there are few overtly Catholic references in the "Faith Tips" on the back of the cards. (These are: "Feast Days", "Statues" and one reference to Saint Paul.) We don't feel this lessens the uplifting and positive spirit of these cards. It could actually be a bonus for many of us whose extended families are of mixed Christian demoninations!
Ages: The suggested audience says all ages, but some of the questions would be difficult for young children (questions relating to school studies, jobs, goals for the world, preferences for art forms, and museum themes are some of the more complicated topics that appear). We suggest at least age 7, all the way up to Grandparents, with "reading required" for most of the cards.