50 Random Acts of Kindness

So this week isn’t only just the week leading up to Valentine’s Day. It’s also Random Acts of Kindness Week. There are a lot of ideas on the Random Acts of Kindness website but I thought about some places you can go to, people you can spend time with, and prayers to pray. Yes, prayers are acts of kindness too. So instead of spending Valentine’s Day, or heck, any day this week, complaining or crying over some kind of relationship problem, take the time to do some random acts of kindness.

10 Places You Can Donate $50 to

  1. A domestic violence shelter
  2. A homeless shelter
  3. Your local church
  4. A crisis pregnancy center
  5. Your local hospital or blood drive
  6. The local food pantry (use the money to buy food and donate the food to the food pantry)
  7. Go to your closet, dig out $50 of clothes you don’t wear anymore, and donate those clothes
  8. Chastity Project
  9. A pro-life organization like And Then There Were None
  10. Fight The New Drug, an anti-pornography organization

10 Acts of Kindness For Friends

  1. Pay for your friend’s coffee
  2. Treat a friend you haven’t seen in a long time to lunch or dinner
  3. Bake something for a friend
  4. Make a photo album/scrapbook
  5. Make a gift basket
  6. Treat your female friends to a beauty salon treat they love like a mani-pedi
  7. Splurge on a great multiplayer video game for your guy friends
  8. Listen to your friends vent about anything and everything
  9. Draw/paint a picture or write a poem for someone just because
  10. Write a letter to someone you haven’t talked to in forever

10 Acts of Kindness for Family

  1. Call up a family member you haven’t talked to in forever. Even if it’s your mother-in-law
  2. Send flowers to a family member you like the least
  3. Make a gift for your nephew or niece or second cousins
  4. Offer to babysit said younger family members
  5. Plan a family gathering with games and karaoke. (The karaoke is optional.)
  6. Offer prayers to family members who have fallen away or hate you
  7. Pray for family members who have passed away
  8. Spend time with older family members and get to know them.
  9. Send a care package to any family members who are in college.
  10. Send a care package to any family members in the military.

10 Places to Volunteer

  1. Your local domestic violence shelter
  2. A local soup kitchen or food pantry
  3. A children’s hospital
  4. A retirement home
  5. A crisis pregnancy center
  6. Your local church’s youth group
  7. A language learning center
  8. Any extracurricular activities in inner city schools
  9. Your local thrift shop
  10. Your local library

10 Prayer Intentions

  1. The souls in purgatory
  2. The souls of aborted children
  3. People in abusive or violent relationships
  4. People who are struggling with their faith
  5. The homeless people you see on the street
  6. The people who live in poverty all around the world
  7. Those who serve in the military
  8. Peace for the whole world
  9. Our politicians
  10. Those who have no one to pray for

 

My Year In Photos: February

 

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February is associated with love. I’ve written on this blog about how there are many types of love and for this photo reflection, I’ll talk about how I experienced each of the Four Loves (as named by my favorite author, CS Lewis).

Storge: Although Storge is more associated with family, the definition of storge is affection. Once a week, I teach Catechism to a class full of kids in my parish. One little moment that I felt stood out for me was getting a small gift from some of the kids. We were doing crafts that represented “the eyes of our hearts,” like the song “Open The Eyes of My Heart.” I love getting these gifts from my kids because these kinds of gifts are sincere and sweet. It’s things like this that make teaching Catechism worthwhile to me.

Philia: I spent time with my friends preparing for a young adult retreat taking place in March. It was my first time being on staff for any sort of retreat. (I usually attended college retreats instead of staffing.) The friends I made through the Awakening retreat I attended a year ago were still there and they would soon become the best friends I could ever ask for.

Eros: Eros is the most well-known form of love and CS Lewis defines it as being in love. It doesn’t start with superficial physical attraction, but appreciating one particular person. Romantic love by itself is a neutral force. Although I didn’t get involved in any romantic relationships, I did realize that I was crushing hard on one particular person. But he’s an actor. And married. So it ain’t gonna happen.

Agape: God’s mercy is the most beautiful form of agape that one could experience in my opinion. I wanted to detach from my obsessions because I felt like they were getting in God’s way. But God still let me have my obsessions and fandoms. I increased my prayer life by starting up my consecration to Jesus through Mary, which would end on the feast of the Annunciation.

Most people only see love one way, as having a romantic relationship with somebody. In reality, everyone can give and receive love in its many different forms. We can receive affection from families and those we share a close emotional bond with, friendship with those we share great experiences with, romantic love from one particular person, and selfless love from the One who is love.