Tuesday, November 3, 2009

November craft display for All Saints & All Souls

I was searching for lovely November crafts to remember the Holy Souls and acknowledge all the saints in heaven. I found Jen's (Wildflowers and Marbles) beautiful altar display craft that was particularly inspirational. It reminded me of an image from childhood, when my mother use to teach me my daily catechism:

I really wanted to convey this image to my children and be able to reflect upon it daily. It would be a great reminder in the home that the Holy Souls who are completely helpless, need our prayers.

Now I'd like to say that even though this craft looks complicated and hard, it is quite easy and not as time consuming as you might think. It may look expensive, but really there was no real expense except for the 60cm x 90cm painter's canvas, which I was fortunate to buy at a super cheap shop for $15. In otherwords, this is doable with the children, and will provide alot of fun for you all in the making!

The Church comprises of three parts which make up the complete Body of Christ or Communion of Saints. Death does not separate us, as Our Lord said Himself, (Mark 12: 26-27)

26 "As for the dead being raised, have you not read in the Book of Moses, in the passage about the bush, how God told him, 'I am the God of Abraham, (the) God of Isaac, and (the) God of Jacob'? 27 He is not God of the dead but of the living. You are greatly misled."

The complete Church supports each other by prayer and sacrifice:

Lets look at the first half of the craft: The Church Triumphant. This the the Church of saints in heaven and we celebrate these members on the feast of All Saints. They do not need our prayer but the Church Suffering and the Church Militiant are in much need of their intercessory prayer. We think of this Bible passage, (Heb 12:1-2)

“Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [saints], let us lay aside every earthly care and … run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith …”

and these passages (1 Pet 3:12) & (James 5:16)

"For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer.."

"...A good man's prayer is powerful and effective."

We do not interceed to dead people, (dead in the sense they are damned, lost souls) we pray to the living saints of God who are now completely righteous through God's saving grace, as the Bible quote from Mark's Gospel reminds us above.

The blue arrows indicate that the saints in heaven are praying for the souls suffering in purgatory and souls on earth.


Here is the middle part of the craft, The Church Suffering: These are souls who have been saved but upon death, were not completely freed from smaller sins and failings, and as the Bible reminds us: (Rev 21:27)

"Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life."

Our understand of purgatory comes from scripture where it is said: (1 Cor 3:12-15)

12 "Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. 14 If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. "

The Holy Souls are blessed, they have the assurance of their salvation, but they are suffering as they do penance for the sins they committed on earth that they did not make full atonement for.

They are helpless. They cannot help themselves to pass through this place of suffering, faster than expected. They rely on our prayers and sacrifices. While they cannot help themselves, they can pray for us in thanksgiving, especially once they have entered their blessed homeland ~ heaven.


The bottom end of the craft is the Church Militant: That is ourselves, upon earth striving for salvation: (Philippians 2:12)

12 "Why, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling."

Wikipedia says this:

"The Latin word militans has a primary meaning of "serving as a soldier, miltary", but it acquired a secondary meaning of "to struggle, to make an effort", which is the intended sense here. Christians on earth (the Church Militant) are still struggling against sin in order that, when they die, they might go to heaven and be members of the Church Triumphant, those who have triumphed over sin. However, if this struggle is successful, but not completely so, then after death they temporarily become members of the Church Suffering before ultimately joining the Church Triumphant."

We are able to pray for ourselves as the passages above reminded us: (1 Pet 3:12) & (James 5:16)

The offering of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on earth for people on earth and for the Holy Souls. We also pray for priests (spiritual motherhood) and for religious. They in turn pray mightily for the whole world and are that powerful human arm of prayer and sacrifice that often holds back God's Divine arm of justice that weighs heavily over us. (We read about that in particular in the Diary of St Faustina.) Our Lady of Fatima reminded us that "some souls go to Hell because they have no one to pray for them."

We can also pray for the Holy Souls suffering in purgatory. We rely on the intercessory prayers of the saints in heaven and also the Holy Souls who finally enter the Church Triumphant.

This is the mystical body of Christ.

Making the craft

Below you will see the images I used to make the craft. You can click open any of the images and use to print up onto normal sized paper (I used cardboard). I then laminated each image for strength and durability. I used the following things:

Good quality, wide sticky tape.
Paper Fasteners 25mm
Pack of styrofoam cups (cost me $1.50 at cheap shop)
Pack of cotton balls (cost me $1.50 at supermarket)
PVA glue
On pack each of red and yellow cellophane.
60cm x 90cm painter's canvas.

All the images are layered and I created this by using the styrofoam cups as you can see below.

I used three different sizings for the cups ~ a full cup ~ medium cup, cutting a cup down by an inch (few cms) ~ small cup, cutting a cup so it's an inch big (few cms).

So some of the images stand out futher than others. The Vatican image is the only image attached directly to the board.

I pressed a paper fastener through the bottom of the cup and through the canvas and spread the two ends out behind the canvas to secure the paper cups very well to the canvas. I placed sticky tap around the bottom of the cup to the canvas to limit any movement. I then put tape around the tops of the cups and attached the images to the cup in that way.

This is what the paper fasteners look like at the back of the canvas, I placed some sticky tape over the top of them for extra security.

Now don't forget to find a photo of your family to print up and laminate, it will be backed with a small sized cup.

With the images below you need to print up and cut main images out.


Medium sized cup for this image.

Medium sized cup for this image (I used two cups for this big picture)

This image is stuck directly onto the canvas.

Full sized cup used behind this image (I used one cup, but you could use two at either end for better stability.)
This angel is stuck onto the first row of saints, I used half a cup rim, each end of the rim sticky taped to the left hand side of the saints and I used double sided tap on the top of the arch to secure the angel image to it.
These angels are sticky taped onto the right hand side of the Holy Spirit halo, up the very top of the craft, the bottom of the angels is sticky taped to the side of Jesus on the cross.

This angel is stuck onto the first row of saints on the left hand side, I used half a cup rim, each end of the rim sticky taped to the right hand side of the saints and I used double sided tap on the top of the arch to secure the angel image to it.

These angels are sticky taped onto the left hand side of the Holy Spirit halo, up the very top of the craft, the bottom of the angels is sticky taped to the side of Jesus on the cross.

The Holy Spirit halo is sticky taped just behind the head of Our Heavenly Father.

This image has a full sized cup behind it. (I used two cups with this image)

This saints image is the bottom, right hand row of saints and I used a medium cup behind it.

This row of saints is the bottom, left hand row of saints and I used a medium sized cup behind it.

This row of saints is the top, right hand group and I used a small sized cup behind it.

This row of saints is the top, left hand group and I used a small sized cup behind it.

Our Lady is positioned just under Jesus and the Heavenly Father, she has a full sized cup behind her (two actually) and I sticky taped her top end to the bottom end of Jesus and the Heavenly Father for extra stability. Our Lady as the Mediatrix of All Grace, passes the graces from the saints in heaven and the souls on earth, to these poor, suffering souls. She interceeds to her Divine Son for us all.

With this image I printed up two, one like this and then I put it into paintshop and made a mirror copy. Then I cut each image in half. Two are placed either side of Our Lady using a medium cup behind each image. The other two images are on the outside of the board, using a small sized cup behind each image. I used sticky tape to attach red and yellow cellophane all around the four purgatory images.

I then stuck cotton balls all around the areas you can see it, as well as onto the canvas directly behind the Holy Spirit halo and the two, top rows of saints. Then I made up the arrows and sticky taped them in place ~ all done!


9 comments:

Susana said...

Wow! This is absolutely wonderful! Thank you very much for sharing. I would love to make something like this with my children. Thanks again for sharing your wonderful ideas. I truly appreciate it, as I'm sure many others out there do as well.

God Bless!
-Susana
http://www.motessoricandy.com

Nadja Magdalena said...

Another fantastic idea. Thanks for your detailed instructions and printable images!

Cheryl said...

This is simply beautiful!!! You are so talented and what a lovely gift for your family to look at everyday!

Cheryl said...

This is simply beautiful!!! You are so talented and what a lovely gift for your family to look at everyday!

Christine said...

Your display looks beautiful! I have wanted to make a Communion of Saints wall, as mentioned in CHC's A Year with God, for years. You have simplified the process; I may even be able to get to it this year. Thank you!

Kimberlee said...

That is beautiful and so meaningful! What an inspiring display to have for November - a constant visual reminder to pray and sacrifice both for the Church Militant and the Church Suffering. You are so creative!

Cyndee said...

What a beautiful piece, Anne! This conveys the Communion of Saints beautifully. And you've thought of everything, even sharing your materials that all one has to do is put them together as per your simple instructions! I can't wait to get the family together to work on this one. And I look forward to seeing the kids feast their eyes on the finished work! THANK YOU VERY MUCH and God bless your generous heart!

jenmack said...

Ok, Anne...that is absolutely amazing!!!!

Thank you so much for sharing your creativity and eye for beauty with us! I just LOVE this idea! Brilliant!

Erin said...

This is gorgeous!!! Thank you for sharing all the image links as well so others can use them! I'd love to do this one year, when my children are a little older and can participate in putting it together!