After almost 40 days we are almost there. Holy Week begins this Sunday and as I had said earlier in the week within the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL) we are spoilt for choice, with readings for 3 themes Palm Sunday, Passion Sunday https://wordpress.com/post/thecrossinmybackyard.wordpress.com/112 or the Annunciation of the Lord this Sunday. https://wordpress.com/post/thecrossinmybackyard.wordpress.com/122
Many families have made Lent a special time of family studies, compassion outreach, acknowledgement or fasting, to indicate this lead up to the most significant days in the Christian calander are important.
Many of us have had good intentions but well- life got in the way.
The good news is that you can still make these last few days special. Helping your children understand the significance of the this time of the year.
Now this can also be a big ask at this time of the year. Victoria and Queensland start term holidays next Thursday, and the rest of the country have a long weekend. A perfect time for families to catch up, without parents losing holiday time. So there is packing, arranging with extended family members and preparing the car/tent/caravan to get everyone to where they need to be.
Below I have collated some ideas that might still work for you amongst all this business, including some ideas for the Easter weekend services, which you may or may not physically get too, because of the exhaustion of travel or simply because you are unsure of how they or your children might cope in a different church environment to the one you are use to.
Next week I intend to publish ideas for Good Friday services early Tuesday and ideas for Easter Sunday services late Tuesday (all going well!!! -yep I live in the real world too)
http://www.catholicicing.com/printable-lenten-calendar-for-kids/ also in Spanish, French, Portuguese, Polish and Swedish Even though Lent is almost over, for those families who have not travelled through all 40 days of Lent this is a handy tool in explaining what Lent is and how close we are to the end. Choose the coloured download for this.
For the last week of lent
So love the Lost Sheep books, there are now 4 for Easter and if you have internet connection you can read them on line, https://www.lostsheep.com.au/stories-overview/ (just click on the easter books at the beginning and on the second row) or you might still have time to buy the books on line either through https://www.word.com.au/An-Easter-Story-Peter-and-the-Big-Breakfast-Lost-Sheep-Series/Andrew-Mcdonough/9781925036398 or https://www.koorong.com/search/product/the-easter-story-way-of-the-cross-lost/9781925036510.jhtml (these little soft cover books are light and won’t add too much to your luggage)
Also on line at Lost Sheep you will find free activities or for a small fee (about A$5) you can download so many activities that your clan will never be bored this long weekend no matter what your age. Play and engagement with the stories Wonderful.
I would suggest that Dave the Donkey is a great read this Sunday https://www.lostsheep.com.au/stories/dave-the-donkey-an-easter-story/
Then read The Way of the Cross during the last week of Lent (next week) https://www.lostsheep.com.au/stories/the-way-of-the-cross/
On Maundy Thursday read Peter and the Rooster https://www.lostsheep.com.au/stories/peter-and-the-rooster/
On Easter Sunday enjoy Mary and the Gardner https://www.lostsheep.com.au/stories/mary-and-the-gardener/
For Easter morning https://www.buildfaith.org/easter-sunrise-at-home/
A helpful way of using play to travel from Good Friday to Easter Sunday with your family. Treat both websites as one for maximum benefit. Also make sure you download and print out all pages to take away, and for health reasons don’t use toilet rolls. I recommend printing on thicker paper (available from Officeworks) this means they stand up independently. A tissue box is also recommended I suggest at this time of the year you will probably have a spare one during your travels.
for Protestant use I would only use Mary in p.6 and delete p.7. or just use the empty cloth.
For Easter morning
http://www.faithgateway.com/making-resurrection-eggs-easter-story#.Wq7z4GZL1-U When using with younger children please make sure that you use objects that will not pose a chocking hazard)
many language options here so use the side adjusters and find video’s and ideas in many languages.
FOR THE UNDER 3’S
Let them play with soft toy donkey, heart pillow (from ikea), a soft sheep. These are all images they will encounter at this time of the year.
Make it a rule to say Grace and share a meal together and discuss any themes or issues that arise with your teenager. Giving them your time and space to work through the ideas that come to them this week is invaluable.
They could even start a Journal or diary on line or physically for the last few days of Lent.
Or try this from Bible Society Australia https://www.biblesociety.org.au/holytext/ (Let their phones work for Good)
Gospel readings scheduled in the RCL for are from John
Tuesday John12: 20-36
Wednesday John 13: 21-32
Thursday John 13:1-17, 31b-35
Friday John 18:1-19:42
Try reading from the Beginners Bible or on line at https://www.biblesociety.org.au/holytext/ use the ERV when sharing with the whole family
Whatever you do or wherever you are and whomever your with, keep sharing the Good News that’s the important part.