We often think the path to holiness is one giant, heroic leap up to God. The reality is that it's the development of small, regular habits that gradually turn our hearts and wills to God’s love.
That's the vision behind "Heaven in Daily Instalments," a series of 24 short, two-minute animated videos produced by the Diocese of Macau, based on a book by Fr. Jose Mario Mandia. The videos explore habits of holiness in simple and enjoyable ways. Some of these practices include: turning to God when we wake up, lectio divina
and theological interpretations of Scripture, and the power of going to Mass. The title is inspired by Matthew 6:20, where Jesus calls His disciples to “lay up for themselves treasures in heaven,” one day at a time.
The videos' welcoming narration and engaging animation are great for kids to watch and learn that forming a holy life is a loving gift from God and not an onerous chore. They're also a wonderfully welcome reminder for parents, older siblings, and other adults who are looking for the childlike core of the spiritual life. The narration is available in English and Cantonese versions.
For example, the second episode, called "The Morning Offering," begins with a picture of a praying child that younger viewers might identify with. The video quickly moves to an animation of a rising sun, which leads to a picture a naval captain and a map. The voiceover, accompanied by fun, energetic music, explains the image by describing the practice of morning prayer being "like a ship's captain checking his maps before sailing out to sea." The combination of images, creative narration, and music make for an immediately understandable message.
Heaven in Daily Instalments began to be broadcast on Salt + Light TV in between longer programming on November 27. All episodes, in English and Cantonese, are now available on Salt + Light Plus
Here's the first episode, to give you a taste of the series:
We're grateful to the Diocese of Macau and the Macau Catholic Culture Association for providing these videos to our Canadian audience.