After Pentecost 27B: Ideas to help the 3’s and under relate to this weeks RCL readings.

These are suggestions only, to help parents/caregivers engage their children in services that use the Revised Common Lectionary. They can be used by parents/caregivers or those who help out in small congregations that can not afford to pay Child and Families Ministry.  

Some congregations use all 4 readings in their services others only two.

NOTE: This is the end of the Liturgical year, many churches will be drapped in white this week. Take the time to ask your child what has changed in the church this week. White is the Liturgical colour that represents change. Next week we start a new year and a new season.

They can also be used at home during Family Devotion Time. Remember it is never too early to start faith practices in the home.

If using during worship Prepare a special church bag in advance each week so that you are ready for the rush on Sunday Morning.

Read during the Bible readings,

Pray during the prayers,

Colour, Draw or Craft during the sermon.

Craft or drawing or play are for spiritual responses not for a perfectionist piece that can be shown off.

Remember that little ones will need their own space to move and wiggle,

Sit towards the front so they can see what is going on.

Remember you have bought your child to worship. Enjoy engaging them in it.

You might need to prepare these in advance

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 , The last of AMERICAN FALL OUR Spring . For $10 American dollars (about $Aus 16) you have 12 weeks of colouring sheets. Or you can combine with other parents or ask the Church to make the purchase for yourself and the families.

Crepe Ribbon

sticky tape or glue stick

texta’s

2 pigs soft or plastic but not too small that they could be swallowed.

OR 2 of another animal

Coloured card

figure 8 train or car set.

 

FIRST READING: 2 Samual 23:1-7

READ/WATCH: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nj1YJLYkML0 

Old Pig by Margaret Wild as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-november-25-2018/

PLAY: 2 pigs, soft or plastic but be mindful of the age of the child that the pigs are not too small that they can be swallowed by a child still putting things in their mouth.

OR 2 of any other animal.

 

PSALMS: 132:1-12 (13-18)

READ: 

http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-132-the-forever-king.html

Psalm 132: The Forever King 

Once upon a time, God made a promise
to a king called David.
“One of your great great grandsons
will be King forever.
He will be the light of the world
His will be the greatest victory
In him I will be,
in him I will live.
In him I will show my love to the world.”

 

SECOND READING: Revelation 1:4b-8

READ/WATCH:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJFtl3s1MG4

In a village by the sea by Muon Van

suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-november-25-2018/

MAKE: Make an infinity loop. Take a 40cm of crepe ribbon, glue the ends together after you twist the streamer so that you are glueing the back of one end to the front of the other. Now draw a line, straight or wiggly but continually until it meets again, and it will be on both sides of the loop.

If you have older children you might like to make an infinity heart card https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-p7HymHkKI

PRAY: In the beginning God there was you. (Hold your hand out as if reaching to shake someone’s hand)

At the end there you will be too (Put the other hand out, while still leaving the first one in place)

In the middle of it all (look at the gap between your hands)

there is you 

Amen

GOSPEL READING: John 18:33-37

READ: Dave the Donkey by Andrew McDonough https://www.lostsheep.com.au/stories/dave-the-donkey-an-easter-story/

This captures the idea the continuity of God’s story as it juxtaposes Jesus’s death and birth 

There is a Dave the donkey activity book for $Aus 4.95 that can be downloaded with many activities for many age levels. Pick and choose what would suit.

Colouring -In: https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 The Last of the AMERICAN FALL OUR Spring.

PLAY: if you have a figure 8 train set or car set to play with, this loop allows them to play infinitely, a game with no biggining or end.

Blessings

Wendy L.

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Christian Toys in Aus.

Now as you know I’ve been out of Australia ( or this blog would have been on time, Right!). I have bought back a collection of toys,

bought out of what we would call a newsagent, that are Christian themed. They were purchased from Amy’s Hallmark Shop in New York between the United Nations and the Blue line. I could not imagine doing that in Australia. Even in a toy shop, if I was lucky I might find a Noah’s Ark, but that would be it. Even in a Christian book shop it is extremely hard to find christian toys (yes I know I said book shop!! so of course I shouldn’t expect to find christian toys in there?).

It is not politically correct to stock anything that points to a faith, especially a Christian faith, at home, hence the overtop excitement that I could not just find them, but have a choice of items off the shelf.

Now as you know I advocate the use of some generic toys to elicit a spiritual response from children, everyday items that can be easily found in our stores, for example Ikea heart cushions, blocks, play mats; I suggest making felt pictures, and using colouring in pages, to tell stories. But where can we find Christian toys in Australia? The internet is fabulous but sometimes in this area it is also not our friend, as many sites will not send outside the US, so unless you can pay for an American post box ( I believe Australia Post has a system for doing this) or have a Us bound friend, we are let down by this option too.

Here are some options I have found, they are not comprehensive, so if you know of something please let us all know. Maybe you have been inspired to set up your own company making Christian toys, please feel free to let us know, or maybe you are one of the American sites who can find a way of making your products easily available to the ANZAC market, agin please let us know.

St Paul’s Melbourne shop https://cathedral.org.au/cathedral/shop/sells beautiful tactile timber nativity sets ( the set I bought for Wesley Church Melbourne have teeth marks showing that our little ones cut their teeth on these figures both figuratively and theoretically)

Godly Play Australia lists some men’s sheds that will make Godly play figures http://godlyplay.org.au/materials/

Gepetto’s Toy shops, have great Noah’s Arks  http://geppettosworkshop.com.au/sassafras/category/playtime/noahs-ark/

Though not selling Christian products this company does have some great christian motifs in its work, from the cross on the tent material and play gym crosses, to the angel chairs ( mouse chairs) (wouldn’t you love some of those in your children’s space in church) 

https://www.mylittlegiggles.com/#

Try http://www.nurturebright.com.au/store/index.php?route=common/home  before they go.

https://store.vision.org.au/toys-novelties/cid-150

Blessings

Wendy L.

After Pentecost 26B: Ideas to help the 3’s and under relate to this weeks RCL readings.

These are suggestions only, to help parents/caregivers engage their children in services that use the Revised Common Lectionary. They can be used by parents/caregivers or those who help out in small congregations that can not afford to pay Child and Families Ministry.  

Some congregations use all 4 readings in their services others only two.

They can also be used at home during Family Devotion Time. Remember it is never too early to start faith practices in the home.

If using during worship Prepare a special church bag in advance each week so that you are ready for the rush on Sunday Morning.

Read during the Bible readings,

Pray during the prayers,

Colour, Draw or Craft during the sermon.

Craft or drawing or play are for spiritual responses not for a perfectionist piece that can be shown off.

Remember that little ones will need their own space to move and wiggle,

Sit towards the front so they can see what is going on.

Remember you have bought your child to worship. Enjoy engaging them in it.

You might need to prepare these in advance

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 THIS IS A NEW SEASON, AMERICAN FALL OUR Spring . For $10 American dollars (about $Aus 16) you have 12 weeks of colouring sheets. Or you can combine with other parents or ask the Church to make the purchase for yourself and the families.

https://www.coloring.ws/t.asp?t=https://www.coloring.ws/bible/nw-hannah1.gif


Texta’s

Toys, dolls, soft toys, or animals

Blocks

FIRST READING:1 Samuel 1:4-20

READ: The Lion Picture Bible  p.118 only  Samuel Listens to God’

OR The Beginner’s Bible, Hannah’s Prayer p.156-158

OR If you have older children you might like to read Brave Girls Bible Stories Hannah’s Cry for Help, pp. 79-82 only.

Colouring In: https://www.coloring.ws/t.asp?t=https://www.coloring.ws/bible/nw-hannah1.gif 

PSALM: 1 Samuel: 2:1-10

READ:My First Read a Loud Bible pp.72-73 God answers a Prayer

DRAW: https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 THIS IS AMERICAN FALL, OUR Spring 

What emotion is Hannah feeling as she prays? 

Use any of the methods previously used such as drawing a face or putting the facial expression on a plate or using https://e2epublishing.info/posters/ (scroll down a long way to find them) 

or try these feeling cards http://flamecreativekids.blogspot.com/2013/09/responding-to-bible-feelings-cards.html

PRAY : Draw a Praying in Colour Prayer for Hannah https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFBx9FZT–c

SECOND READING: Hebrew 10:11-14. (15-18),19-25

Read:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_CGUaEvEqw  Flight School by Lita Judge 

A book about encouragement like the second half of this reading.

PLAY: with dolls, or soft toys or animals. Encourage encouragement play with your child.

Draw: a picture of encouragement OR what colour does encouragement feel like, colour the page using that colour.

GOSPEL READING: Mark 13:1-8

Read:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sUiEEmgvM4 A dark dark Tale by Ruth Brown as recommended by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-november-18-2018/https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sUiEEmgvM4

Play: Build with blocks, even let them destroy their creations, or you do so. Ask them how they feel about their work being broken? Then ask what is left? What will they do about it?

PRAY: When all falls down (collapse to the floor)

You are still there God.

Amen

How are we perceived.

I’m travelling again. I’ve written on this previously and the decision to travel with my husband at this stage of our lives. This time the tear was not my girls but my parents, as my Mum has just had major surgery and has recovered slower than expected, so it will be lineball now as to whether she is out of hospital by the time I get home

Each time I travel I look for God in the moment. This time I’m acutely aware of my shortcomings as a traveller. As an Australian travelling in the USA, I am aware of our cultural image as being bad tippers, It is not in our culture to tip or to carry cash. I’ve been aware that this time I have failed to recompense, Not because I was being stingy but because I didn’t know what to do. When I’m tired the situation is worse, I revert back to my usual behaviour. That is, to be genuinely thankful, and to cheerfully thank and move on. Sometimes it’s been because I haven’t had any cash in my purse. I noticed that there is a new prayer that has come into my being and seems to be repeated regularly “Dear God please may my incompetence in this situation not harm this person and may you recompense them for my mistakes.”

It is not just in my lack of tipping prowess that I am aware that I don’t fit in. It’s also in my dress, sometimes I have not packed appropriately for an unexpected change in the weather. Both of these things had me thinking on the passage in Luke 16:15, that God knows what is in our hearts. None of us knows what others are thinking. How my lack of tipping is perceived by anyone is about them, God knows what is in my heart. My contemplation switched to how we welcome families into our congregations, it is a two way street. How they perceive us is as much a part of the equation as how we are trying to be perceived.

In Australia at the moment we, the church, are not perceived well by the general community that have stopped trusting Christians and stopped seeing a need for faith in their lives. Like my turning to prayer when I have felt I’ve let people down. I want to encourage congregations to turn to prayer for those families they have been faithfully preparing for in anticipation. A prayerful response is as much a part of the preparation than the actions.

blessings

Wendy L

After Pentecost 25B: Ideas to help the 3’s and under relate to the RCL readings.

These are suggestions only, to help parents/caregivers engage their children in services that use the Revised Common Lectionary. They can be used by parents/caregivers or those who help out in small congregations that can not afford to pay Child and Families Ministry.  Some congregations use all 4 readings in their services others only two.

They can also be used at home during Family Devotion Time. Remember it is never too early to start faith practices in the home.

If using during worship Prepare a special church bag in advance each week so that you are ready for the rush on Sunday Morning.

Read during the Bible readings,

Pray during the prayers,

Colour, Draw or Craft during the sermon.

Craft or drawing or play are for spiritual responses not for a perfectionist piece that can be shown off.

Remember that little ones will need their own space to move and wiggle,

Sit towards the front so they can see what is going on.

Remember you have bought your child to worship. Enjoy engaging them in it.

You might need to prepare these in advance

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 THIS IS A NEW SEASON, AMERICAN FALL OUR Spring . For $10 American dollars (about $Aus 16) you have 12 weeks of colouring sheets. Or you can combine with other parents or ask the Church to make the purchase for yourself and the families.

Dolls house or cooking sets or toy animals

Texta’s

Building blocks

Dolls or soft toys

FIRST READING: Ruth 3:1-5, 4:13-17

Read: Early Readers storybook bible pp.148-151

Lion Picture Book Bible pp.114-151

My first read a loud bible p.70-71

The Beginners Bible physical or Ebook pp.152-155

If you used Brave Girls last week you can continue to the end of the chapter today.

PLay: with family toys such as a dolls house, or food preparation, or toy animals. Or dress up in wedding attire.

Pray:

Dear God

That Our homes (make a house shape with your hands)

Are a safe place for us all ( cuddle yourself)

Amen.

PSALM 127

Read this beautiful reworking of the poem by Rev Sylvia Purdie

http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-127-the-lord-builds-the-house.html

PLAY: building blocks

DRAW: you and Jesus working together on something.

No worries. What does a calm face look like? Draw or find a face here https://e2epublishing.info/posters/ (scroll down a long way to find them)

SECOND READING: Hebrew 9: 24-28

Read/watch: https://youtu.be/xaKVluM-XSs waiting by Kevin Henkes

Play: peek a boo or take two small toys in your hand, hold them behind your back, swap them between your hands for variety, ask them to choose a toy.

Pray:/ Meditate, turn on a battery operated candle ( not a tea light) ask them to sit still until you turn the candle off, make it very quick so they succeed and build up the time, the candle is on, until they get bored with this.

GOSPEL READING:

Read: could not find a children,s story book with these stories in this week if you know of one please let me know?

Colour in

:Illustrated children’s ministry

Play: retell the stories from today’s gospel reading and let them play them out with dolls or soft toys

Blessings

Wendy L

An Aussie Halloween

I watched a relatively new phenomena happen yesterday.

Halloween was being enacted in my suburban street. Migrants have bought knew ideas into Australia with each wave, so we have wonderful coffee, great afternoon teas, food from every nation readily available, as well as ideas and attitudes. But we are now experiencing Halloween, bought here by social media.

I noticed houses with decorations pop up on Wednesday morning as I drove to church for our usual Wednesday morning service.

Then about school finishing time I found groups of dressed up or partially dressed up school children, heading in and out of the houses.

Now our house was no exemption, and in fact we have been living this “tradition” since my eldest daughter asked for a Halloween Party when she was 9, egged on by her friends fuelled high on television. Yes she was born on the 31st of October, a date that had absolutely no relevance to me at the time, except as her birthday.

But 2 years ago, my youngest daughter noticed that there was a couple of kids, knocking at the door, and decided to leave out a bowl of lollies with a note asking them to help themselves, but leave some for others. Last year very little was taken.

This year, we replenished the bowl. Foot traffic was noticeable. Groups of children would   creep in and I overheard wonderful conversations, “How many should we take?”, that group chose 2 lollies each. Another group yelled “Thank You” as they left.

At dinner our family spoke about this new phenomenon, and I queried if as a Christian family we should engage in this practice. To which I was informed that it started as a community/neighbourhood meal where the village would gather before All saints day. It was, they said, about community and wasn’t that what faith is about?

As more and more people live secularly, it is interesting that we continue to look for community activities. What does the church have to offer our community? How do we outreach to a community that have rejected the need for faith in their lives. We offer playgroups, we rent out our spaces, we have soup kitchens or coffee shops. We stand along our neighbours, and encourage friendships, help, compassion etc. We live out our faith, sometimes that means questioning new practices and sometimes it means embracing them.

Blessings

Wendy L.

 

 

After Pentecost 24B: Ideas to help the 3’s and under relate to this Sundays RCL readings

These are suggestions only, to help parents/caregivers engage their children in services that use the Revised Common Lectionary. They can be used by parents/caregivers or those who help out in small congregations that can not afford to pay Child and Families Ministry.  Some congregations use all 4 readings in their services others only two.

They can also be used at home during Family Devotion Time. Remember it is never too early to start faith practices in the home.

If using during worship Prepare a special church bag in advance each week so that you are ready for the rush on Sunday Morning.

Read during the Bible readings,

Pray during the prayers,

Colour, Draw or Craft during the sermon.

Craft or drawing or play are for spiritual responses not for a perfectionist piece that can be shown off.

Remember that little ones will need their own space to move and wiggle,

Sit towards the front so they can see what is going on.

Remember you have bought your child to worship. Enjoy engaging them in it.

You might need to prepare these in advance

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 THIS IS A NEW SEASON, AMERICAN FALL OUR Spring . For $10 American dollars (about $Aus 16) you have 12 weeks of colouring sheets. Or you can combine with other parents or ask the Church to make the purchase for yourself and the families.

You might need,

felt, both sticky and stiffened

paper dolls

Family toys such as dolls, doll house, cooking set etc

 

FIRST READING: Ruth 1:1-18

READ: So many choices so chose a storybook Bible they enjoy, some tell all the story while others will only tell a part so you can choose a slightly longer version and read it like a serial over the coming weeks

If you also have older children everyone might enjoy Brave Girls Bible Stories Today read pp.72-24 0nly today

OR The Beginner Bible either as a physical or ebook pp.152-153

OR The early readers Bible p.147

OR My First Read a loud Bible p.68-69

PLAY: with family toys , dolls house, or baby dolls, or cooking sets etc

MAKE: you could make a character in the Ruth story over the next few weeks. This week make Ruth and Naomi, you could dress up some dolls, or using a strip of paper dolls, colour in one doll as Ruth and the other as Naomi, then seperate them from the other paper dolls, attach a piece sticky felt, buy a piece of hardened felt and make your own felt board top layout the story over the next few weeks.

PRAY: Put your hands together

Thank you God that you stick by me, like Ruth stuck by Naomi.

PSALM 146:

READ: Rev Purdie has written two beautiful rewrites of the Psalm, so I’m leaving it up to you to chose the one that best suits your child.

This is a joyful Psalm so read with excitement.

Get them involved with easy actions or if reading the right hand version get them repeating the simple responses in Bold print.

Look through your collection of emotions (see previous Tuesday blogs) or draw joyful happy faces on paper plates on in their journal

SECOND READING: Hebrews 9:11-14

READ/WATCH https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBKfbo60jlI One Winter Day by M. Christina Butler Most of Australia does not suffer such cold weather or have these animals but sometimes the message is worth a detour out of our comfort zone, and this talks about sacrifice like today’s reading in Hebrews.

PRAY: Jesus you gave everything for me

Thank You

 

GOSPEL READING: Mark 12:28-34

Colour In : https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 THIS IS A NEW SEASON, AMERICAN FALL OUR Spring

SING: https://www.seedsfamilyworship.com/product/seeds-of-purpose-vol-4/ item 4

MAKE: a heart out of paper, colour it in, make one for you , make one for someone else who loves God.

Day of the Child

Yesterday (Wednesday the 24th) was International Day of the Child. This week from the 20-28 of October is Australia’s National Week of the Child.

This year the theme is“based on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Article 12 – children have the right to say what they think should happen and have their opinions taken into account.” https://www.education.vic.gov.au/about/events/Pages/childrensweek.aspx

You can find the full Convention here

https://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CRC.aspx

 

We have had the Prime Ministers apology to the victims of Abuse on Monday https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/House_of_Representatives/About_the_House_News/National_Apology_to_Victims_and_Survivors_of_Institutional_Child_Sexual_Abuse, with many Denominations issuing statements and prayers in response.

 

A Christian Radio station https://www.lightfm.com.au

had a beautiful responsive Day of the Child yesterday with children and parents phoning in during the drive time programme. But they did seem confused if it was a “day” or not.

 

I know of one church (Melbourne Welsh Church)http://www.melbournewelshchurch.com.au

that had  a children lead service on Sunday.  If you marked the week in this way, please let us know.

Deidre Palmer, President of the Uniting Church in Australia announced a new resource on Communicating with Children this week https://assembly.uca.org.au/tools-for-listening?fbclid=IwAR05tDc0WJIaOq08HCV8E1Cv15gZEVuNKxdMTcpVVj8PuezPmoqNPT5z2Zo

As Christian’s we look to the Bible for stories to connect our heritage with the UN Article, and we find both Old and New Testament examples, from the story of David and Goliath in 1 Samual 17, and Eli listened to Samual in 1 Samual 3, to that of the young Jesus in the Temple, in Luke 2:41-52.

Yes, children have asked and been listened to as part of our tradition. This may not sit well with those who follow the idea that children should be “seen and not heard”, a social rather than biblical precedent; though Proverbs 1:8, might be misconstrued in this way. The Seder tradition of questions being asked by the youngest child points to a tradition that should not be discarded.

The issue for many congregations is how to satisfy this UN article that has been turned into legal requirements in many places including Victoria.

What stops us from hearing the voice of the child in our congregations? Is it as simple as not understanding that there is Biblical precedent, or does it lie in the social construct and traditions including the legal ones of management?

Perhaps it’s an educational understanding that children are empty vessels to be filled, rather than an understanding that they come formed in the image of God with developing skills?

Our congregations could do a better job at inviting the questions of children, and of hearing what they are saying. We may need precedents and processes, but essentially, we need the understanding that Christ placed the child in the midst (Matthew 18: 1-14), our midst.

For those who have successfully satisfied this Article, what advice can you pass on to us.

After Pentecost 23B: Ideas to help the 3’s and under relate to the RCL readings.

These are suggestions only, to help parents/caregivers engage their children in services that use the Revised Common Lectionary. They can be used by parents/caregivers or those who help out in small congregations that can not afford to pay Child and Families Ministry.  Some congregations use all 4 readings in their services others only two.

They can also be used at home during Family Devotion Time. Remember it is never too early to start faith practices in the home.

If using during worship Prepare a special church bag in advance each week so that you are ready for the rush on Sunday Morning.

Read during the Bible readings,

Pray during the prayers,

Colour, Draw or Craft during the sermon.

Craft or drawing or play are for spiritual responses not for a perfectionist piece that can be shown off.

Remember that little ones will need their own space to move and wiggle,

Sit towards the front so they can see what is going on.

Remember you have bought your child to worship. Enjoy engaging them in it.

You might need to prepare these in advance

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018 THIS IS A NEW SEASON, AMERICAN FALL OUR Spring . For $10 American dollars (about $Aus 16) you have 12 weeks of colouring sheets. Or you can combine with other parents or ask the Church to make the purchase for yourself and the families.

http://flamecreativekids.blogspot.com/2013/09/responding-to-bible-feelings-cards.html

https://s3.amazonaws.com/supadu-imgix/paracletepress-us/pdfs/excerpts/EX-9781557255952.pdf

The Early Readers Bible https://www.koorong.com/search/product/early-readers-bible-2001-gilbert-beers/0310701392.jhtml

Paper plates

Textas

glue

drawing paper

 

FIRST READING: Job 42:1-6,10-17

READ: The Early Readers Bible  p.255

DRAW: Draw a picture of all the wonderful things God gives to us.

PRAY:

In good times and bad I will value you God. Amen

 

PSALM 34:1-8 (19-22)

I will bless the Lord all the time!
We’ll never stop praising our God!    (HOLD YOUR ARMS UP AND AWAY FROM THE BODY)
Magnify the Lord with me.
Together we’ll lift his name high. (PALMS UP RAISE ARMS SLOWLY UNTIL THEY ARE ABOVE YOUR HEAD)
Taste and see – the Lord is good!
Relax and rejoice – you are safe in him. ( SMILE AND RELAX YOUR BODY – FEEL ALL YOUR MUSCLES RELAX)
When trouble comes, cry out to God.
He is always around you, protecting you. (WRAP YOUR ARMS AROUND YOURSELF- GIVE YOURSELF A CUDDLE)

FROM http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-34-always-praising.html actions have been added by me

How does the Psalm make you feel? Use any of the methods previously used such as drawing a face or putting the facial expression on a plate or using https://e2epublishing.info/posters/ (scroll down a long way to find them) 

or try these feeling cards http://flamecreativekids.blogspot.com/2013/09/responding-to-bible-feelings-cards.html

 

SECOND READING: Hebrews 7:23-28

READ How do I Pray for Grandpa by Laura Alary http://www.picturebooktheology.com/search/label/intercession

PLAY/PRAY: Use a play mat such as https://www.ikea.com/au/en/catalog/products/10361911/ then play and pray. Add  people, animals and cars, ambulances, police cars, fire engines etc.

PRAY: Use the Praying in Colour method Praying in colour https://s3.amazonaws.com/supadu-imgix/paracletepress-us/pdfs/excerpts/EX-9781557255952.pdf 

GOSPEL READING: Mark 10:46-52

READ: The Early Reader Bible A Man Who wanted to see, pp.419-423.

COLOURING-IN: https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-fall-2018

MAKE:  a paper plate face emphasising the eyes. Draw them or cut out eyes and paste them on . You can google eye pictures and cut them out an paste them on to finish your plate. (don’t use googly eyes, from craft shops, with the young as they are easily swallowed)

PLAY:  Eye spy around the church. eg I spy a place where we baptise children, etc.

Blessings

Wendy L.

 

 

 

 

Adults like to play in church!!

I’ve noticed something lately that’s actually taken a long time to filter into my mindset.

Adults like to PLAY in Church.

No I’m not talking about the social tennis, football or cricket clubs.

I’m talking about the interaction that happens when you bring children’s toys into the worship space.

Have you noticed the reaction when young Miss zooms her car into the foot of the nearest adult. This gift, this invitation to play and interact, is often taken up by the adult she’s targeted. The smile cracks on the serious “church” face, and all else is suspended as momentarily they enter into the game and zoom the car back or playfully hold onto it.

We recently introduced a toy Quokka, to help children familiarise themselves with areas of worship. Now our congregation is, well, old. And Quokka has been getting plenty of hugs, smiles and movement from our not so young congregational members. He even ended up in our Minister’s chair. What cheek! ( I wished I’d thought of that).

I’ve seen our multi-racial dolls, used to tell stories of family life in the 21st Century, which might have been harder to share without these prompts, and not just by the children.

But the playing doesn’t stop there. The first time I had started to wonder if there was something to this idea that games were suitable for the Adults in the sanctuary, came a few years ago when I started to organise a monthly parents get together at the end of the service. Noticing that some of our littles were very active I thought I’d find some faith based activities that might help our kinetic learners. One of these was  beautiful prayer mats from Flame http://flamecreativekids.blogspot.com/search?q=Easy+sensory+prayer. I had set this prayer up along the back of a pew, which was fortunate because, after the children had completed it, the adult members of the congregation wanted to have a go, and some of them were octagons! A little later I lent this to one of my fellow regional  Child and Family Pastors, who reported back a similar occurrence when she used it in her congregation. Since then I have used this prayer with an Adult committee I was working with, and it was a great success.

Quiet a few years ago now, we built an incredible lego building as part of a spirituality class, at CCTC, now Sterling Theological College.

Another experience was that the best part of the Children’s Spirituality course I completed a few years ago was playing with the toys as a response to what we had been learning.

Over a hundred years ago Montessori built on the idea that children learnt through play, to change the lives of the Roman slum families.

Godly Play builds on her tradition and it is gaining credibility for its programs in aged care facilities. https://www.godlyplayfoundation.org/godly-play-with-adults-a-graceful-nurture-review/

When we invite children into worship, we invite their world, and their world enhances ours.

So off you go. Go play.

And let us know of your playful worship experiences.

Blessings

Wendy L.