The week of December 17th – During the month of December, your family will focus on the virtue of generosity. Each week you will gather together and reflect on how you can make a difference to someone else by being generous. Find a time this week to gather as a family, say a prayer, read or listen to a prompt, respond as a family to what you have heard and then act on the suggestion for the week.
December Virtue Generosity: making someone’s day by giving something away
What is a virtue? A virtue is something that God does in us to change the world around us.
GATHER together in prayer
LISTEN through scripture; readings; stories; music; videos
RESPOND to what you have heard
ACT in service to what God is calling you to
Gather together as a family and pray this prayer:
Do Generous Things
(The Anglican Church of New Zealand, New Zealand Prayer Book, page 141)
You give seed for us to sow,
and bread for us to eat;
make us thankful for what we have received;
make us rich to do those generous things
which supply your people’s needs;
so all the world may give you thanks and glory.
This we ask through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Listen to this Story Corps story recorded by Yelitza Castro and Willie Davis (Christmas Dinner): https://storycorps.org/animation/yelitza-castro-and-willie-davis/
Generosity happens in all kinds of ways. Sometimes we plan how to be generous and sometimes we do generous acts without even thinking about it. Yelitza Castro did something – with the encouragement of her daughter – that had a life-changing effect on Willie Davis. As a family, talk about your reactions to this story. Here are some questions you can use to prompt your discussion (or come up with your own questions):
Is it important to feel like someone cares about you?
Is it important to know someone by name?
Can generosity change a person’s life?
Do you have to have a lot to be generous?
Can generosity benefit the person being generous?
December is a hectic time of year and people are often less than generous in their encounters with others. Try this experiment this week – act in generous ways towards the people around you this week. Smile at others wherever you are – at school, at work, in the store, at the gas station. Call people by name when you see them. Be polite – say please and thank you. Show appreciation. Compliment people. Let others know that you notice them and care about them. Check in with your family at the end of the week and talk about how it felt to be generous with your attention. Was it hard or easy? How did it make you feel? How did people react? Were there missed opportunities? What would you do differently?
Food for Thought – Quotes about gratitude
Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity. Simone Weil
Teach this triple truth to all: A generous heart, kind speech, and a life of service and compassion are the things which renew humanity. Buddha
So deeply do we care for you that we are determined to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you have become very dear to us. 1 Thessalonians 2:8 (Bible)