The Saint Next Door by Dan Jason (with an introduction written by Bishop Edward B. Scharfenberger) and Saint Pillow Dolls are just a few Catholic gift ideas you can give this holiday season.
The Saint Next Door by Dan Jason (with an introduction written by Bishop Edward B. Scharfenberger) and Saint Pillow Dolls are just a few Catholic gift ideas you can give this holiday season.

It’s the season for giving. If only we knew what to give!

Finding the perfect Christmas present for your loved ones is often a dreaded battle each holiday season. That’s why we put together a Christmas Gift Guide to help your hunt for useful and fun gifts that still carry the genesis of the Christmas season. 

BOOKS
The Saint Next Door
Saints aren’t found in stained-glass windows or carved statues from centuries ago. Everyday saints continue to walk the earth. By practicing heaven and living love, writer Dan Jason believes saints appear in our neighbors, communities and families. Journey with him on the road to sainthood. With forward and introduction written by our very own Bishop Edward B. Scharfenberger. Available for preorder now (available Dec. 20) for $26 at barnesandnoble.com.
The Saint Next Door, linked here.


The Vatican Cookbook 

This book is more than just pasta recipes. Presented by The Pontifical Swiss Guard, this book takes a dive into the beautiful history, fine arts and culture of Vatican City. Packed with exceptional recipes, old and new, and superb photos that take you behind the scenes of Vatican City. Available for $21.80 on amazon.com.
The Vatican Cookbook, linked here.


The Vatican Christmas Cookbook

The anticipated sequel to the “The Vatican Cookbook,” this Christmas edition offers more than 70 new recipes, many new versions of Christmas classics and more fresh innovations. Available for $22.09 on amazon.com. 
The Vatican Christmas Cookbook, linked here

A Teacher Who Prays: A Journal to Guide You in Praying for Your Students

If you know a catechist or teacher in your life, then this is a gift for you. This book offers tools to help teachers pray intentionally, specifically and uniquely for their students each week. It is part of a series of prayer journals, including popular versions for spouses, parents and grandparents. Priced at $9.99 and available at amazon.com.
A Teacher Who Prays, linked here

Runner
Award-winning Catholic author Tracy Clark continues the Cass Raines private detective series with her latest book “Runner,” which was released earlier this year. Clark’s years of Catholic schooling come through in the novels, as Cass, a former cop, also attended Catholic schools and had planned to become an English teacher like her late mother. But the classroom didn’t draw her like the streets did, so she began her career in the Chicago Police Department. In Clark’s first novel in the series — “Broken Promises” — Raines wants to solve the murder of her favorite priest in a Chicago parish. All of Clark’s books are available on amazon.com.
Runner, linked here

VARIETY
Catholic Coffee
Move over cup of Joe, we are having a cup of St. Joseph! The Catholic Coffee company cultivates coffee roasts around the life and history of saints, matching the tales of their faith-filled lives with robust coffee flavors, perfect to kick off any morning. Priced at $14.95 for a 12-ounce bag and available in ground or whole bean. To purchase, visit catholiccoffee.com. 
Catholic Coffee, linked here.

Catholic-themed candles
Candles are a classic for gift giving, but these Corda candles step it up a notch. Each candle is crafted with scents inspired by the saints and the Catholic faith. Priced at $22.50 for a 6-ounce candle. Available for purchase at cordacandles.com.
Corda candles, linked here

Every Sacred Sunday Mass Journal
With Mass readings and ample space for notes, this journal is a beautiful way to encounter Christ in Scripture. Whether you are a lifelong Catholic or attending your first Mass, this journal makes it easy to prepare, engage and reflect on the Scripture readings each week. It has full Catholic Mass readings for every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation in the 2021-22 liturgical year. Available at everysacredsunday.com for $44.95.
Every Sacred Sunday Mass Journal, linked here.

Bible Journal
Bible journaling is a creative devotional practice. For readers, it’s a way to deepen your time with Scripture by bringing the word of God to life in the pages of your Bible with art, notes or favorite quotes you draw along the sides of the page. A list of great Bible Journal options and where to purchase them can be found at coloringbookaddict.com/bible-journaling-coloring.
Bible Journals, linked here

Bible pens, highlighters
A great complimentary gift (or stocking stuffer) for Bible journals are bible highlighters, pens, and markers, which are designed specifically for the Bible’s traditionally thin pages. Available for purchase at www.amazon.com.

ACTS OF SERVICE 
Become a volunteer
Organizations across the Albany Diocese could use your help! Your time and energy are the greatest gifts of all for many local charities and nonprofits. Grab a friend or loved one and sign up to help those in need. Find volunteer opportunities near you by checking out www.volunteermatch.org.

Donate at your local blood drive
Give the gift of life to someone in need this season with a blood donation. Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood, and this lifesaving care starts with one person making a generous donation. Find a drive or donation center near you by visiting www.redcrossblood.org. 

Donate in a loved one’s memory
Give a donation in memory of a lost loved one to hundreds of charities. Head to www.globalgiving.org/gifts/inhonor.

TOYS
Nativity Bricks Ultimate Kids Nativity Set
Kids will delight in this Lego-like set that brings the magic of Christmas to life. Craft your manger from over 300 bricks and the set also includes Mary, Joseph, the Three Wise Men, Gabriel the angel, animals and baby Jesus. Priced at $58.45 at amazon.com.
Nativity Bricks, linked here.

Cards Christians Like

If you want the less raunchy version of Cards Against Humanity that will still leave you laughing, then this is the perfect gift for you. Great for young adults and teens, Cards Christians Like is the perfect party game that still carries convictions. Priced at $35 and available at cardschristianslike.com
Cards Christians Like, linked here

Saint Pillow Dolls
Pillow pets might be cute, but they’re nothing compared to adorable saint pillows. With over 200 different saints to choose from, the hardest part will be deciding who to get! Sized 9x5 inches, each pillow brings its own charm and protection for your loved ones. Priced at $14.95 and available at Etsy.com.
Saint Pillow Dolls, linked here.

 — With CNS