Looking for some gift ideas for your Catholic friends who you already gave rosaries to last year? I’ve got some ideas!
(1) Letters From A Young Catholic
If you like this blog, why not give it away for Christmas? I wrote a book this year compiling what I think are my best posts so far, and—I know I’m somewhat biased—but I think it would make a pretty decent Christmas present for a fellow young Catholic.
Like this blog, Letters From A Young Catholic is all about how young people can live out the Catholic faith in the world today. Everything from prayer life to dating to friendship is covered, and it’s all written from the perspective of me, an early twenty-something Catholic.
(2) Patron Saint Figurine with Personal Letter
Maybe it’s because a small part of me misses getting actual toys for Christmas, but I think small desktop figurines of saints are just the coolest. Plus, at around $20, it’s not usually a super expensive gift. Small statues are great either for your nightstand or on a desk at work or in a dorm room. It’s sort of like having a picture of your friend, and it’s a cool way to remind yourself of your ultimate goal—to be worshipping God with all of the saints for eternity in Heaven.
Add a personal letter and you’ve got thoughtful, practical, and (I think) unique in one gift.
[With this gift you can either go with a saint that you know the recipient has a devotion to, or maybe one that you think the recipient would “get along with” so to speak. The letter in that case could explain the qualities of the saint that you think the recipient would appreciate or resonate with.]
(3) CatholicMatch.com Membership (But seriously!)
Look, some may laugh, but the vast majority of young single Catholics are looking for their spouse. And CatholicMatch is one way that many young Catholics have found that person.
Of course, tread wisely with this one. DO NOT give this to anyone with whom you’ve never spoken with about his or her feelings towards online dating. DO NOT give this to someone who has not, within the past month, given you explicit reason to know they’d be excited about receiving such a gift. Basically, only get this for your closest friend in the world who you know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, will be excited about it and not the least bit offended. Seriously. You could ruin someone’s Christmas if you give this to the wrong person. So use some common sense 🙂
(4) Register A Friend For a Retreat
I’ve been trying to go on the same Ignatian Silent Retreat since I was in high school. Inevitably, something comes up and I can’t go. Plus, it costs money!
So here’s an idea: Foot the bill for a retreat for a friend. Give them a planner opened to the dates of the retreat and have it marked up as booked (extra points if you’re artsy and can draw cute little retreat-looking pictures to fill in the dates). If the retreat has brochure-like materials, give them those, too.
**If you can’t afford the whole retreat cost, you could still give away the marked-up planner, and perhaps a Mason Jar labeled: “Retreat Fund.” Put whatever you can afford in the jar ($10, $20, $50—whatever), and attach a note saying, “I got the ball rolling. I’ll help you find the remaining $$$.”
(FYI: If you’re looking for a young adult retreat, 242 Revolution Ministries is hosting one in Southern California January 3-5. Registration is open now. It will be a great chance not only to meet other cool 18-25 year olds, but most especially to encounter Christ and grow in deeper relationship with Him.)
(5) Prayer Journal with Personal Note
Like the saint figurine but even more cost-effective. I love writing letters to God and have gone through a handful of prayer journals in my life. What’s a prayer journal? It’s basically just a journal, except instead of addressing a book you’re addressing a person—the Living God. It’s a place to give God your struggles, your joys, your doubts, and your longings.
So buy a cool looking journal and write a note in the first pages explaining what it’s for. (Bonus: buy coffee and a mug to go with it. Who doesn’t like journaling while sipping coffee?)
[A variation of this gift: Prayer Journals are somewhat commonplace. What may be less common is a journal intended for your future spouse. This might make a cool gift for a close girl-friend given with a copy of Katie Hartfiel’s Woman In Love]
…If all else fails, buy candy. 🙂