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First Communion gifts are treasured for life so it is good to give something special. Children treasure their First Communion missals and rosaries and so do adults.
But what should you give? How do you make a decision?
Rosaries, Missals, cards, and keepsakes are the usual gifts for both adults and children. Usually the parents or God-parents give these because they are more personal, important, and dear.
Give less expensive rosaries to children, though, because they are very prone to lose them. Put the name and phone number of the child inside the missal so that they can be returned. Adding a special note on the inside cover is endearing, too. Be sure to add the year as children refer to this book to remember the special day. Notes are extra special when they are personalized with a lovely note like, "For my dear daughter Mary on her First Communion day - that she may become a saint in every way."
The most treasured and traditional Catholic First Communion gifts are those that represent the reason for the day, the first reception of the Holy Eucharist, receiving Jesus. How many of us treasure our First Communion catechism books and First Communion rosaries. Even the cards we receive are extra special because we keep them to remember the people who gave them.
Other excellent gifts for especially grandparents and other relatives are Catholic books, pictures, and holy cards especially those of the communicant's Baptismal saint. Statues are great, too, but might be a disappointment to some children if they cannot play with them. Also, a Catholic family is often large and it can be hard to find space for many statues throughout the sacramental years.
Here are some of our best ideas for First Communion gifts:
First Holy Communion Catechism - If it is early in the First Communion year, our first recommendation is St. Anne's Helper First Communion Catechism for its content and great review aids. It is so important to have a good catechism first. The Audio CDs make awesome First Communion gifts for Grandchildren or God-children so that they can learn the truths in the Baltimore Catechism easily. Many times our children do not have help learning their prayers or the catechism answers so these audio files are very helpful. The Downloads are easy to buy and you can own them immediately. Both the CD and the Download make learning the Catholic Prayers, Catholic Ten Commandments, and first sacraments easy using Audio and Text files. The companion First Communion Catechism Copybook offers copywork worksheets in Manuscript that you can bind or use individually.
First Communion Rosaries - One of my favorite First Communion gifts was the First Communion Rosaries I received from my parents and even one from the Dominican sisters who ran our school. They usually come in colors that commemorate the event and are appropriate for either boys or girls. They frequently have a center medal with a Host and ciborium depicted, try to choose one that is sturdy since the open medal breaks easily. Children and adults both appreciate receiving an adult sized Rosary that has their favorite color or center medal, but white is often the choice for girls and black for boys.
See if you can get the rosary blessed before giving it. Benedictine rosaries are favorites, too, since they carry additional promises when blessed by the Benedictine monks. The Dominican blessing can be given by any priest and is a wonderful thing to do for your family and friends when you are giving First Communion gifts. These are beautiful recommendations:
Girls-First Communion Dresses - Since many Communion dresses are not modest it is good to know that many costume patterns make excellent First Holy Communion dress patterns and allow you the flexibility choose the material you like and to add the decorations you choose, and you can also make her First Communion purse to match! Of course, a hand made First Communion dress is the most thoughtful of First Communion gifts, especially if made by someone dear. The First Holy Communion dress should be modest, simply elegant and comfortable. Remember that the lace can itch and cut! Simple cotton bias tape can cover the back side of any rough lace or elastic even on a store bought, my Mom did this for me on a darling handmade dress donated by a parishioner. Bridal shops often have a wide selection, too. Be sure to get her First Communion shoes before the Easter dressy shoes are gone for the season. Pretty white shoes can be hard to find after Easter! Her First communion purse can keep her dear treasures handy on that beautiful day.
Irish First Communion Dresses - Consider making your own Irish First Communion dress and a matching First Communion purse in the same material and motif! Seemstresses are thrilled to help in the selection of satin and Irish linen materials. Many costume patterns make excellent First Holy Communion dress patterns and allow you the flexibility to add the decorations you choose! For purity's sake, keep the "wearin' o' the green" for another dress, she's heard all about a stained dress resembling a sin on her soul!
Boys-First Communion Suits - White suits are also easier to find at bridal shops and can be rented like the groom's tux, yet places like JC Penney still carry First Communion suits. White boys' First Communion shoes can be rented if you cannot find them, but black is fine. We know one lady who simply spray-painted a pair of shoes white! They looked great and she received so many compliments! Many parishes do not ask for the white apparel and only ask that the boys wear a shirt and tie or sometimes a Sunday suit. Old pictures of First Communions seldom show the boys wearing white, which might be a helpful suggestion to your parish DRE during tough economic times when it is hard to buy a one time outfit.
First Holy Communion Invitations - First Communion invitations are not only useful to invite relatives and friends to the Mass and gathering, but can also be treasured mementos to Grandparents and Godparents, other relatives and friends. Be certain to call early in the year to let those who must travel know about the First Communion and its probable date so they can make travel arrangements. It is very nice to tell those who are traveling that you expect no First Communion gifts. Their presence is a most generous gift. Send the invitations about three weeks to a month ahead of time. Many Godparents and Grandparents save these invitations to put in shadow boxes or scrapbooks.
First Communion Remembrance Cards - These First Communion Remembrance cards are the cards that relatives and friends send to the First Communicant. They can be bought at Catholic books and gifts stores or homemade. We have kept a homemade card handy throughout the year for the child to make his or her own record of prayers and sacrifices. We encouraged them to use a gel pen to mark Masses and Rosaries as diamonds, extra little prayers as pearls (circle with a bent hatch mark), sacrifices as crosses, and acts of Faith, Hope and Charity as hearts. They love to mark them and these become their most treasured keepsakes over the ensuing years. Little ones can make First Communion gifts of our First Communion coloring pages.
First Communion Veils - First Communion veils are easy to make. Again, costume patterns give the measurements and directions with materials suggestions.
First Communion Jewelry - Catholic Jewelry usually has some symbol of the Crucifixion or Catholic saints as Crucifixes or patron saints medals. The communicant's own patron saint is a good motif for First Communion gifts; medal, book or statue. Popular First Communion patron saints are Saint Pius X (allowed little children to receive Communion), Blessed Immelda, and St. Paschal Baylon.
First Communion Certificate - Usually the parish provides the First Communion Certificate which should be filed for evidence for future sacraments, yet it is nice to buy another so as to be able to frame it as a keepsake or add it as a title page in a scrapbook.
First Communion Cakes - FIRST! Before the party: Plan a time before the party for your First Communion candidate to say the prayers that are so well heard on this excellent day! After that let a simple gathering mark the day. The First Communion cake is the first element necessary for any First Communion reception. It marks the occasion in a dignified manner and adds to the festivity appropriate to this glorious day. It is easy to make a First Communion Cross Cake by removing the outer quadrants of a 9x13 for a small group or by using three 9x13 pans with the two cakes placed laterally on a tray and the one sliced in half for the Cross arms. Small white plastic Rosaries can be added to the decorations, too! Consider using Crisco as the base in a butter cream frosting mix if you want that intense white color that is so appropriate for a First Communion cake.
We hope that you have enjoyed these ideas and will pass them on to others!
About Our Catholic Audiobooks
St. Anne's Helper's Audiobook Catechisms for both First Communion and Catholic Confirmation are arranged with each question and its answer on its own track for easy navigation. Need to memorize the Apostles' Creed or the Ten Commandments? Easy. Just go to the specific track and press "repeat one"! Or "pause" and "play". Do you want a self correcting quiz? Easy. Just press "pause" between the question and the answer! Imagine the ease of being able to review your RCIA preparation or read any Catholic ebooks and pdf files on an ereader! EReaders can contain your whole library of Catholic Ebooks right in your own palm ereader.
The text of both the questions and their answers is included as a text fileon the same CD or Download as the audio file on each Catholic Ebook! There's no need to buy another booklet, CD or Download. Better! This one is reprintable for as many copies as you need!
The best early First Communion gifts are those that teach the faith. The CDs are easy to wrap and send, and we can send them wherever you ask.
About Our Catholic Printable Worksheets And Catholic EBooks
The text of both the St. Anne's Helper First Communion and the Catholic Confirmation Catechisms are also available as Catechism Copybook Ebooks as well! They are downloadable now. You can reprint as many as you would like. The First Communion Catechism Copybook ebook is available in beautiful Manuscript. The Confirmation Catechism Copybook ebook is available in either beautiful Manuscript or beautiful Cursive writing - your choice!
They can be spiral bound at an office supply store, printed on 3-holed paper to keep in a binder (our favorite way), or used as printable worksheets.
Use our printables in your Roman Catholic catechism class, Faith formation, or Sunday school lesson; Pin a picture to remember Saint Anne's Helper; and share with family and friends on Facebook. Thank you so much!