YEAR A Advent 4: Ideas to help 3’s and under relate to this weeks RCL readings

 Welcome to the Fourth Sunday in Advent. Remember to light your fourth candle at home.

PRAY:

Little Candle Burning bright (make yourself tall, with a flame- Arms over your head with your palms together in prayer)

Light my path (shade your eyes and look ahead)

and spread your Love (make a heart with your hands ) – Blow out the candles and watch the smoke float out into the world.

Amen

School Holidays have started for Australia and New Zealand. So don’t let this be an excuse for those in traditional services where Sunday School has finished not to attend church. Prepare well and easily with this guide and enjoy teaching them the importance of Worship and Lifelong faith formation.

For older children you might like to purchase Jillians Life Packs https://feedmyfamilyblog.com

OR https://store.illustratedministry.com/collections/new-arrivals/products/illustrated-worship-resources-winter-2019-2020?variant=31032325210210

Or use a Sermon Note pages such as https://paththroughthenarrowgate.com

You can find some ideas here https://wordpress.com/post/thecrossinmybackyard.wordpress.com/910 as to where to sit and what to bring.

THE LORDS PRAYER IN ACTIONS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOugEQpcc_k OR https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMjm93ylL2w

FIRST READING: Isiah 7:10-16

TELL: your child about how you had to wait for them to arrive and what it was like. They too were something coming but not yet come before they were born.

COLOURING IN: https://store.illustratedministry.com/collections/new-arrivals/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2019-2020?variant=31032290738274 This resource has colouring in pages until the 23rd of February 2020. And costs about $A20.

SING/LISTEN: https://www.seedsfamilyworship.com/product/seeds-of-christmas-ep/# Number 3 Call His name Emmanual

PSALM 80:1-7, 17-19

Psalm 80: The Restoration Project

Can’t you hear your people, Lord?
Can’t you see the state of things?
Great Shepherd of Israel, hear the cry of your sheep.
Mighty God of Hosts, see your people’s pain.
We are tired of eating the bread of tears
We are worn by strife and fear.
Restore us with your favour, Lord!
Save us in your love.
Your home on earth is past repair
The walls are cracked and broken
The fruiting vine is hacked and burned
Your people turn away.
Send us a Shepherd, Lord!
Send us a Son from your right hand.
All your strength is in him
All your power to heal.
Restore us with your favour, Lord!
Save us in your love.

Thanks again to Rev. Purdie http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-80-godrsquos-shining-smile.html
How do you think the person who wrote this might be feeling?

Describe that feeling, or draw it, or point out what it feels like from a set of emotional cards https://innovativeresources.org/resources/card-sets/bears-cards/ or the Bears App https://innovativeresources.org/resources/digital-applications/bears-app/

 

SECOND READING; Romans 1:1-7

READ/WATCH: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTLxkMa0XDk I like me By Karen Beaumont

DO: How would you tell people about you?

DRAW: a picture of You. God made You.

PRAY: 

Dear God,

I am yours 

Amen

 

GOSPEL READING: Matthew 1:18-25 

READ: The Lion Story Bible, Joseph Leads the Way p.124 only

OR The Bible for Kids App. https://bibleappforkids.comThe First Christmas Gift screen (or Page 2) only

SING/LISTEN: https://sovereigngracemusic.org/music/songs/have-you-heard/

OR https://sovereigngracemusic.org/music/songs/the-gospel-song/

PRAY: 

Like Joseph

Help me trust you

Amen

Blessings

Wendy L.

YEAR A Advent 3: Ideas to help 3’s and under relate to this weeks RCL readings

 Welcome to the third Sunday in Advent. Remember to light your third candle at home.

PRAY:

Little Candle Burning bright (make yourself tall, with a flame- Arms over your head with your palms together in prayer)

Light my path (shade your eyes and look ahead)

and spread your Love (make a heart with your hands) – Blow out the candles and watch the smoke float away)

Amen

Worshipping with Children is so important. You can find some ideas here https://wordpress.com/post/thecrossinmybackyard.wordpress.com/910 as to where to sit and what to bring.

THE LORDS PRAYER IN ACTIONS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOugEQpcc_k OR https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMjm93ylL2w

FIRST READING: Isaiah 35:1-10

READ/WATCH: THE CURIOUS GARDEN BY Peter Brown https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6JgMZrpLLw  as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-sunday-december-15-2013/

Make: a path, use blocks, or material or paper, whatever you have to make a path for your toys to walk on., either on the sanctuary floor, or on the pew. This reflects the Bible passage message. 

PRAY

(Walk your fingers down your arm)

May I make your world bloom (or happy or joyful or kind)

While I follow 

Your path

Amen

 

PSALMS

Psalm 146:5-10

You made all things
everything we can see
everything we can’t see –
earth and sea and sky
and all that lives –
You keep faith with us forever.

You are at work in the world –
you set things right –
food for the hungry
sight for the blind
welcome for the stranger
care for the poor.
Make these be true for me today
as I live in you and you in me.
Be Lord of this day and every day.
Yes! Be praised!

The last 2 verses of God at work by http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-146-god-at-work.html

How does the Psalm make you  feel?

Describe that feeling, or draw it, or point out what it feels like from a set of emotional cards https://innovativeresources.org/resources/card-sets/bears-cards/ or the Bears App https://innovativeresources.org/resources/digital-applications/bears-app/

 

OR Luke 1:46b-55

READ: I love these words by Sally Lloyd -Jones in The Jesus Storybook Bible

” Wait. God was sending a baby to rescue the world? “But it’s too wonderful!” Mary said and felt her heart beating hard. “How can it be true?” Is anything too wonderful for God?” Gabriel asked. So Mary trusted God more than what her eyes could see. And she believed. “I am God’s servant” she said “Whatever God says, I will do.” p179.

OR https://teachingcatholickids.com/why-not-the-magnificat-marys-song-of-humble-joy-ought-to-be-our-song-too/

God picked Mary.

How does Mary sound? 

What makes you happy? draw it, or show it?

Colouring in https://sermons4kids.com/marys_song_colorpg.htm

 

SECOND READING: James 5:7-10

READ: Sprout, Seed, Sprout By Annika Dunklee available to purchase https://www.dymocks.com.au/book/sprout-and-seed-and-sprout-by-annika-dunklee-9781771473088 as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-december-15-2019/

OR READ/WATCH Wait by Antoinette Portis https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0Ox6Xz3KF4 as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-december-11-2016/

COLOURING-IN: https://store.illustratedministry.com/collections/new-arrivals/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2019-2020?variant=31032290738274 This resource has colouring in pages until the 23rd of February 2020. And costs about $A20.

 

GOSPEL READING: Matthew 11:2-11

READ: the Jesus Storybook Bible p.202  Heaven Breaks Through, starting ” But God sent John ……King is coming back for you”

or The Beginner’s Bible, pp.304-305

Colouring In; https://sermons4kids.com/john_baptist_colorpg.htm

Play with road signs

Or Make signs that point you around the Sanctuary. ie This way to the cross, or the piano or the toilets etc. (for the very young a drawing of the object is all that’s needed.

Pray

Help me follow the signs to You Jesus

Amen

 

BLESSINGS

Wendy L.

 

YEAR A Advent 2: Ideas to help 3’s and under relate to this weeks RCL readings

Welcome to the second Sunday in Advent. Remember to light your second candle at home.

PRAY:

Little Candle Burning bright (make yourself tall, with a flame- Arms over your head with your palms together in prayer)

Light my path (shade your eyes and look ahead)

and spread your Peace (make a peace sign– Blow out the candles and watch the smoke float away)

Amen

Worshipping with Children is so important. You can find some ideas here https://wordpress.com/post/thecrossinmybackyard.wordpress.com/910 as to where to sit and what to bring.

If attending those congregations using the Revised Common Lectionary you will find suggestions for all of the readings  for Advent 2 Year B below. Not all congregations use all readings. You can use these ideas during the service or at home during the week.

FIRST READING: Isaiah 11:1-10

READ: RULERS OF THE PLAYGROUND by Joseph Kuefler No video’s of the book being read are available. It is easily available in Australia as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-december-8-2015/ and can be ordered here https://www.dymocks.com.au/book/rulers-of-the-playground-by-joseph-kuefler-9780062424327

If you can’t get hold of the book try listening too https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muscgfdahs0

OR tell your child about their family tree and what they have from their ancestors. If the child has been adopted or fostered share what they bring to the family tree.

Colour-In https://d1xcdyhu7q1ws8.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/01144701/PPSG_RulersOfthePlayground_Activity.pdf  P. 3 OF THIS DOWNLOAD WOULD BE GREAT FOR A SCHOOL AGED CHILD’S ACTIVITY.

Play: Pretend you are a King.

PSALM 72:1-7,18-19

Psalm 72: Long live the King!


Praise to the King!          Long live the King!
Our King is full of grace and truth,
          from him come springs of living water.
He brings peace and justice,    good news to the poor.
He lifts up the broken     and takes down the proud.
He will out-shine the sun    and out-live the moon.
And he shall reign for ever and ever
                                   his kingdom will have no end.

adapted from http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-72-long-live-the-king.html

MAKE or BUY a simple crown. What sort of King would you be?

READ/WATCH The Lion King especially when Simba realises he can be a good King

COLOURING-IN https://d1xcdyhu7q1ws8.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/01144701/PPSG_RulersOfthePlayground_Activity.pdf  same as for FIRST READING

SECOND READING: Romans 15:4-13

READ: One of my favourite books at the moment is Mallee Sky by Jodi Toering and Tanya Harricks , it expresses the idea of hope beautifully to an Australian Audience You can purchase it here https://www.readings.com.au/products/26139045/mallee-sky. There are no you tube clips of this book unfortunately.

For another approach to this reading try Watching https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZf60cb3Th8 of Stone Soup retold by Heather Forrest which looks at the idea of community as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-sunday-december-5/

Play: with your toys, maybe in a farm or a dolls house, or just play.

PRAY:

May you help me create the type of family you want Lord

With everyone, welcome

Amen

 

GOSPEL READING: Matthew 3:1-12

READ: The Jesus Storybook Bible, Heaven breaks through pp.202-203 only Or  from “But God sent . . . . begin a new life”

OR The Lion Picture Bible, The Baptism of Jesus, pp.240-241 only

OR The Beginner’s Bible, John Baptises Jesus p.303-306 stopping at from their sins” only

COLOUR-IN https://sermons4kids.com/john_baptist_colorpg.htm

DO: Jesus cousin was John the Baptist? Who are your cousins? Look at pictures of them.

 

Sunday Reflection: Advent in the home

I was steadfast that I wasn’t going to do one of those posts where people list their favourite or the top 10 Advent ideas/calendars. I gave in. I have tried to create the Cross in my Backyard facebook page as a sort of easy access point for those Down under, that are time poor but want to be well informed in the field of Child and Family Worship in a culturally appropriate way. Where both families and those who minister to them can find information that will encourage and inform their home and communal worship.

So I am wadding in.

I hope you will be encouraged to make the Advent season one of importance that counters the culture norm at the moment to remove Chris form Christmas. I strongly encourage Grandparents to practicing  Advent at home, as they may be the only contact their grandchildren have with the real reason for Christmas. The grandchildren that may never set foot in a church because of their parents choices, may be in your home and notice that your home, what you do and what you listen to may influence them in seeking their own faith.

Also Advent practice in the home, allows parents to find the balance that the “silly season ” may be lacking. A few minutes each day to slow down and connect with your family not  only brings God into the centre of your day, but gives the opportunity for family togetherness when the academic year is closing and all the events at the end of the year, ballet performances, graduation services, end of  year parties and assemblies crowd into the day.

Advent Calendars

FREE

http://www.kidsfriendly.org.nz/wp-content/Uploads/Advent-calendar-for-families2.pdf

https://www.dropbox.com/s/e5kv4r4tdljef0w/AdventCalendar2019%20-%20Single.pdf?dl=0&fbclid=IwAR15Ylks55IeRkNWm3KVlX120JHmiGxNEiWfZJ2uSrAxHWc__il5HBG-9Xs

https://www.sustainable-advent.de/en/?fbclid=IwAR17GWXTRlEHtViu5_KFL-BeoTjeOWcR1roRd_y389735FMtQ3RYHJ1BpnU

2019 Advent Calendars

Advent Paper Chains

https://sermons4kids.com/nativity_advent_calendar.htm?utm_campaign=meetedgar&utm_medium=social&utm_source=meetedgar.com&fbclid=IwAR2lWK7r8ixxDFTRTqSg07K5goG8pwXplmWrFpJVzu3cIRT4bt_PRie7dN4

https://thomasmousin.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/2019AdventCalendar-2.pdf  I love this as you can enlarge each bauble to colour in and add to a Christmas tree

https://www.faithgateway.com/jesus-storybook-bible-advent-calendar-printable/?fbclid=IwAR1nz9jd1hzu5HLljOy9qULYyjYpSybt2tAqQtT8gqqFDfbCpBIi8olOxwY the guide is free but you will need to purchase the Jesus Storybook Bible if you do not have a copy

Requires some materials

https://network.crcna.org/faith-nurture/diy-advent-calendar?fbclid=IwAR0HaAPFv7gnQl_OLW7DPrd9T1mWnQUesZgLVUi2A9GIzFk5i4dbAxXMpGM#.XcmukjzaBoA.facebook

Need to pay for 

https://www.athomeandchurch.org.nz/shop/product/324724/The-Advent-Story-2019–Sold-in-lots-of-5/

Printable Advent Countdown Calendar For Catholic Kids

https://sanctifiedart.org/childrens-ministry/advent-action-calendar-for-children

Multi Lingual

https://www.sustainable-advent.de/en/?fbclid=IwAR17GWXTRlEHtViu5_KFL-BeoTjeOWcR1roRd_y389735FMtQ3RYHJ1BpnU

Multiple suggestions for both home or corporate worship

https://www.strandz.org.nz/advent–christmas.html?fbclid=IwAR0vbR3lou-QO8iq9hjB-NIRvJs9uS66YTamARdl1Jr47tcQn1u28QszKcQ

Advent study for Families

Digital LiFE Packs

An Illustrated Advent for Families: In Light and Darkness

 

Okay so this is too late to start Advent on Sunday. Just make a start as soon as you can and don’t use being late to begin an excuse for not celebrating Advent in the home.

Blessings

Wendy L.

YEAR A Advent 1: Ideas to help 3’s and under relate to this weeks RCL readings

HAPPY NEW YEAR 

It’s the start of the Liturgical Year, and we are back to Year A in the three year cycle.

You might like to view https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPTWq1AsCao To explain the liturgical year.

Have a party at home to celebrate, bake a cake (or buy one), and put the first candle of Advent on the top. 

My favourite New Year activity is to make a paper chain calendar. 

You will need Purple(more towards the blue spectrum) or Deep Blue paper(p/b), white (w), black  (b), red (r), green (g), gold (gd) and Purple (more towards the red spectrum) (p). coloured paper. For 2019/20 you will  need to place the colours in the chain thus

4 chains in P/b  Advent

2 chains in White   Christmas

1 chain in White

6 chains in Green  After Epiphany

1 chain in White

6 chains in P   Lent

7 chains in white  Easter

1 chain Red   Pentecost

1 chain White 

23 chains in Green After Pentecost

1 chain in white

Take your time to look around the church today to see the new colours and banners in the church,

IMG_4384

This is Highfield Road Uniting Church with banners designed by Margaret Duncan.

Many congregations will use candles to count down to Christmas

IMG_4386

 

Below you will find some ideas to help you share the Readings from the Revised Common Lectionary with your children.

If you are a parent or Guardian

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

Always have plain drawing paper, washable  TEXTA’S , the books that are suggested and the toys or craft suggested for this week

Remember to download the colouring sheets and check out the links before Sunday morning.

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

Sing or sway during the Hymns

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. Don’t throw these out when you leave the church. Keep them at home in a special box, and bring them out to remind your child what has been happening or use as future prayer points.

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

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

If you are a small congregation without a Child and Family Minister have an area available near the front for parents/guardians to worship with their children, and print off this information so that it is readily available or direct them to this site. Set up an area with books and toys in it that will enhance their spiritual experience. (Ie not just toys for “keeping them quiet”).Spiritual Delights or Toy Box tat! andMake the books appealing

If you would like these ideas as a PDF file sent to you each week, please contact me.

THE LORDS PRAYER IN ACTIONS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOugEQpcc_k OR https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMjm93ylL2w

FIRST READING: Isaiah 2:1-5

READ/WATCH: CAN’T YOU SLEEP, LITTLE BEAR? by Martin Waddell as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-december-1-2019/ HINT: this is long, so break it down into smaller bits and wait till your child is ready to come back to read/watch it again.

PLAY: play with a dolls house or build your own house out of bricks

PRAY

You God,

guide my way

Amen

 

PSALM 122

Psalm 122: The Peace of Jerusalem
 
Jerusalem, O Jerusalem,
the home of the Lord, (Make a house with your hands)
the house of David, (Make a house with your hands)
the gates of Israel, (fold your hands across your body with finger tips touching the swing your arms open like a gate)
the Holy Land.
Jerusalem, O Jerusalem,
we pray for peace inside your walls, (make a peace sign)
peace between your peoples, (make a peace sign)
peace through your land. (make a peace sign)
We will seek your good (shield your eyes as if losing for something)
and pray for the peace of Jerusalem. (hold your hands in prayer)
 Thanks again to http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-122-the-peace-of-jerusalem.html actions in italics from me

RESPONSE: When you think of your home how does it make you feel? Describe that feeling, or draw it, or point out what it feels like from a set of emotional cards https://innovativeresources.org/resources/card-sets/bears-cards/ or the Bears App https://innovativeresources.org/resources/digital-applications/bears-app/

SECOND READING: Roman’s 13:11-14

READ/WATCH:  Hey! Wake up! by Sandra Boynton https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VLgGhipXtc as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/update-and-lectionary-links-sunday-december-1-2013/

MAKE: Use a paper plate, colour one side yellow, and the leave the other white. Flip it back and forth asking your child to show you what they do when the Sun is up and when the Moon is up. 

Or make a candle. use a tube such as the inside of a cling wrap or aluminium foil roll, wrap it in purple paper, tuck in both ends. Fold up square about 15cm square of yellow cellophane, place at top of roll, to make a burning candle.

Play: with your toys, put them to sleep, then wake them up to play with you and the other toys.

GOSPEL READING: Matthew 24:36-44

Reread the story of Noah’s ark, try The Beginners Bible storybook or the Bible for Kids app two by two (third story in) https://bibleappforkids.com, or your favourite Bible story book.

Count in twos, two legs, two arms, two seats, etc

When getting ready this week talk about being ready to live God’s way everyday

PRAY

LIKE NOAH,

GOD

HELP ME TO BE READY 

TO DO YOUR WILL

AMEN

 

THE SERVICE MIGHT BE FINISHED BUT

Now is the time to continue teaching your child beyond the walls of the church. 

Use the craft or drawings during the week to talk about the service or the stories.

Use any of the readings during the week, at bedtime, as story time or during the day in play or prayer.

Enjoy sharing your faith with your child.

You might like start watching https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPTWq1AsCao

Blessings

Wendy L.

 

ADVENT 4C: Ideas to help you and your 3’s and under enjoy church and relate to the RCL readings

Advent Candles and a children’s Prayer.IMG_3212

During Advent, many congregations will count down to Christmas using the 4 candle system. Usually they will be Purple or Blue with the Love candle (week 3) often in Pink.

MAKE: your own candle each week, cut an A4 sheet of cardboard in purple or blue (depending on what your church uses) write this week’s word, LOVE in any languages you use or know, or that are used by members in your church community (if you don’t know the right word, ask congregational members to write it for you). Cut a piece of 4cm yellow or orange (or both) of cellophane, crinkle the square, then stuff into the top of the candle.

You can also decorate a paper plate, and place each week’s candle around the plate until Christmas

Or you could purchase and download

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/advent/products/an-illustrated-advent-wreath?variant=15605449916514$US15, for 5 candles. HINT, Print base on thick paper.

PRAY: (Stand tall with your hands, palms together over your head)

Little candle burning bright

Grow our LOVE

To fill the world.

Amen

FIRST READING: Micah 5:2-5a

READ/WATCH: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PvW86ELPCtQ Waiting by Kevin Henkes thanks to http://www.picturebooktheology.com/search/label/waiting

OR you could read Christmas story today in what ever storybible your child likes or try My First Read-aloud Bible by Batchelor and Boshoff pp.138-141 Jesus is born and The Shepherds, explain that this was all told a long time before it happened.

PLAY/MAKE with or make a nativity

http://www.catholicicing.com/diy-printable-nativity-for-kids/

or if into Lego and your child is past putting things in there mouth try https://frugalfun4boys.com/lego-nativity-set-instructions/

PRAY: Thank you God

That you keep your promises

Amen

 

PSALM: Luke 1:47-55

SING/LISTEN https://www.seedsfamilyworship.com/product/seeds-of-christmas-ep/# Number 4

PRAY: Draw a list of all those things you want to thank God for.

OR Psalm 80:1-7

Psalm 80: The Restoration Project
(For Advent: The Lectionary Psalm for Sunday 3 December 2017)

Can’t you hear your people, Lord? (put your hands over your ears)
Can’t you see the state of things? (put your hands over your eyes)
Great Shepherd of Israel, hear the cry of your sheep. (rub your eyes)
Mighty God of Hosts, see your people’s pain. (hold your hands over your stomach)
We are tired of eating the bread of tears (put your hands on your forehead)
We are worn by strife and fear. (drop your shoulders)
Restore us with your favour, Lord! (hold your hands up in above your head)
Save us in your love. (make a love heart with your hands)
Your home on earth is past repair (shake your head)
The walls are cracked and broken (hang your head)
The fruiting vine is hacked and burned (swing your hands from your shoulder to hip)
Your people turn away. (turn your face to the side)
Send us a Shepherd, Lord! (drop your shoulders)
Send us a Son from your right hand. (fold your hands in a prayer position)
All your strength is in him (Put your arms up as to show off your muscles)
All your power to heal. (fold your hands in a prayer position)
Restore us with your favour, Lord! (smile)
Save us in your love. (make a love heart with your hands)
http://www.conversations.net.nz/psalm-80-godrsquos-shining-smile.html actions by me.

PRAY: for help. Use the play mat and pray for the cars, people, animals , beach etc as you drive around. Remember to thank God for sending help. Amen

SECOND READING: Hebrews 10:5-10

READ/WATCH; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QJtSi6TBu7Q Good People Everywhere by Lynea Gillen a suggestion by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-december-23-2018/  strata the 18 sec mark

PLAY: with community toys, such as dolls house, animals or cars, Practice being nice/kind to others.

PRAY: Jesus died to save us

and we want to be like Him

So help us see someone else’s need

So we may help them too.

Amen

 

GOSPEL READING: Luke 1:39-45 (46-55)

READ: My First Read-aloud Bible by Batchelor and Boshoff pp.134-135

COLOURING IN: https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2018-2019?variant=13700704632930 IF purchased this week (about $15 Aus ) it will supply you with colouring in sheets for the next 11 weeks)

SING/LISTEN: https://www.seedsfamilyworship.com/product/seeds-of-christmas-ep/# Number 4

PLAY: families, have enough small (but not age appropriately too small) dolls or figures for them to act out family dynamics, Mum Dad, Aunts Uncles and Cousins.

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

Older children might enjoy https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/illustrated-worship-resources-winter-2018-2019

 

TO Do LIST:

You might need to purchase

A Large Battery operated candle

Heavy coloured paper to make paper chain in 5 colours  2 different purples or a purple and a blue, green, white, red

a paper plate

texta’s

a road mat

toy cars, and family dolls or figurines

You might need to Print

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2018-2019?variant=13700704632930 If purchased this week (about $15 Aus ) it will supply you with colouring in sheets for the next 11 weeks)

Perhaps  https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/advent/products/an-illustrated-advent-wreath?variant=15605449916514

http://www.catholicicing.com/diy-printable-nativity-for-kids/

https://frugalfun4boys.com/lego-nativity-set-instructions/

Blessings

Wendy L

 

Advent 3C: Idea’s to help you and your 3’s and under enjoy church and relate to the RCL readings

Advent Candles and a children’s Prayer.

IMG_3203

During Advent, many congregations will count down to Christmas using the 4 candle system. Usually they will be Purple or Blue with the Love candle (week 3) often in Pink.

MAKE: your own candle each week, cut an A4 sheet of cardboard in PINK, write this week’s word, JOY in any languages you use or know, or that are used by members in your church community (if you don’t know the right word, ask congregational members to write it for you). Cut a piece of 4cm yellow or orange (or both) of cellophane, crinkle the square, then stuff into the top of the candle.

You can also decorate a paper plate, and place each week’s candle around the plate until Christmas

Or you could purchase and download

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/advent/products/an-illustrated-advent-wreath?variant=15605449916514$US15, for 5 candles. HINT, Print base on thick paper.

PRAY: (Stand tall with your hands, palms together over your head)

Little candle burning bright

Let us share the JOY

You bring

with everyone Today

Amen

FIRST READING: Zephaniah 3:14-20

READ/WATCH When I’m Feeling Happy  by Trace Moroney https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DFsPcs1UW3c

SING: https://www.seedsfamilyworship.com/product/seeds-of-praise-vol-3/ Song 8

DRAW: A picture of the things that make you happy/joyful

 

PSALM: Isiah12:2-6

READ: I trust you God (put your hands on your heart)

Even when I’m frightened (shake your body)

I will tell everyone about you (cup your hands like a megaphone around your mouth)

I will sing  joyfully about you ( give a little skip)

I will not stay quiet. (run up and down on the spot)

About you God (clasp your hands in front of you and fling them open)

Amen

 

Colour-In: https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2018-2019?variant=13700704632930 Once purchased (about $15 Aus ) it will supply you with colouring in sheets for the next 12 weeks)

Find or draw a picture of being joyful (try any of the previously mentioned emotion based websites or buy as digital cards at https://innovativeresources.org/resources/digital-applications/bears-digital-version/

 

SECOND READING: Philippians 4:4-7

READ: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lkJ3L3Q52g I will rejoice by Karma Wison, though written around Psalm 118 It’s a good substitute of today a Joy suggestion by http://www.picturebooktheology.com/search?q=joy&updated-max=2017-09-11T09:30:00-05:00&max-results=20&start=6&by-date=false

SING: https://www.seedsfamilyworship.com/product/seeds-of-courage-vol-1/# Song 2

DRAW: Those things that make you happy.

PRAY; Thank you God

That you made a world

Where I can find things

That make me happy

(point to the things that make you happy)

 

GOSPEL READING: Luke 3:7-18

READ: The Lion Picture Bible The Baptism of Jesus pp.240-241

OR The Beginner’s Bible John Baptises Jesus, pp.303- the first sentence of p. 306.

Make: Make a card to share. Take an A4 Sheet longways fold in half

IMG_3204

then fold each end into the middle. IMG_3205-2

It might be a Christmas card or a Thankfulness card. Draw a picture on the front or the inside ( i cut a Christmas tree in mine)img_3208.jpg

when you are finished cut down the middle, IMG_3210

and you will have 2 cards, one to share and one to keep.

 

 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,

 

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

 

 

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

If you have a bored older child these school holidays you might like to purchase https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/illustrated-worship-resources/products/illustrated-worship-resources-winter-2018-2019, which will engage them in all the RCL readings for the week.

 

TO Do LIST:

You might need to purchase

a paper plate

texta’s

A4 thick paper

You might need to Print

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2018-2019?variant=13700704632930 Once purchased (about $15 Aus ) it will supply you with colouring in sheets for the next 12 weeks)

Perhaps  https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/advent/products/an-illustrated-advent-wreath?variant=15605449916514

Blessings

Wendy L

Blue Christmas and Children

I would like to encourage you to think of a Blue Christmas service for Children.

Though I do believe that it is entirely possible to hold an all age or Intergen Blue Christmas, there are occasions when holding a separate service may be an option.

This is likely where the congregation is older and more familiar with a traditional liturgical tradition, or where they still have the mindset that children should not be at funeral’s.

Adults who need a familiar space in which to do their own grief work, may find the presence of children, too difficult for an adult mourner to deal with. On the other hand the presence of children can open us up to possibilities beyond ourselves and move us forward in grief too.

A grieving adult in the throws of an anger phase (a normal stage of a grief response) may actually be a danger to child, and it is best if the two developmental stages are separated, or that you have the expertise within the congregation to deal with the effects of an adult’s anger outburst at a child. Therefore, people trained in child development and anger issues would need to be available. I know that all congregations cannot afford this type of expertise nor are they blessed with that type of experience within the congregation.

 

Though children experience the same grief stages as adults, they experience them in short burst over longer periods of time and tend to revisit the grief process at each new developmental stage. Thus, you cannot say that a child has moved on from grieving, so giving many opportunities throughout a child’s life to revisit the grief can be beneficial. Many adults though may not understand that a child is thinking about a death in a different way 5, 10 years later, and as most Blue Christmas services are held explicitly for those who have experienced a loss this year, children may already be out of the intended audience for this service, purely because their loss doesn’t fit in the calendar time frame.

 

Giving children an opportunity to learn how to grieve within a Christian context is important. If we do not allow them the space to phrase grief within the Christian story, what other influences are we allowing to take its place?

 

If you are open to a Children’s Blue Christmas, there are a wonderful collection of resources available to you.

You will find books with a grief theme at http://www.picturebooktheology.com/search/label/grief

Don’t forget that obvious favourite such as The Very Hungry caterpillar, can be useful too.

and

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nj1YJLYkML0 Old Pig by Margaret Wild

OR My favourite colour is Blue, Sometimes by Roger Hutinson https://paracletepress.com/collections/grief-resources/products/my-favorite-color-is-blue-sometimes

And books about Grief https://www.grief.org.au/ACGB/Publications/Online_Shop/ACGB/ACGB_Publications/Online_Shop/Bookshop.aspx?hkey=5e75df31-a372-4086-baaf-90eac9b7ddbb

Be sure to use craft resources, such as Christmas tree decorations to make, as a physical reminder of the person/or animal that they are missing.

 

Or draw black pictures, (black texta, charcoal, crayon etc, on black paper) or use black wash over bright papers that can be scratched back to find a picture.

 

Use the emotions of the Psalms, try Rev, Purdies versionshttp://www.conversations.net.nz/psalms.html  of those that show loss.

 

Use, emotional cards such as those from St Lukes  Innovative Resources https://innovativeresources.org/resources/card-sets/the-bears-cube/ or https://innovativeresources.org/resources/card-sets/stones-have-feelings-too/

to check in on how they are feeling throughout the service.

 

Validate whatever emotion the child has. Don’t force them to be anything other than what they are, but also be mindful that caring about other’s feelings is important too.

 

Listen to music that has a sadness about it, some jazz, or classical tracks are perfect for this, just make them short snippets, a 2 hour concert is beyond our children’s concentration!

 

References

https://hope4hurtingkids.com/help-centers/grief/

https://kidshelpline.com.au

https://www.grief.org.au including https://www.grief.org.au/uploads/uploads/ChildrenandGrief(Pre-school).pdf

https://www.grief.org.au/uploads/uploads/ChildrenandGriefPrimary%20School).pdf

https://www.grief.org.au/uploads/uploads/Adolescents%20and%20Grief.pdf

 

Don’t forget that a loss, may not be a death.

If you want a complete liturgy, please contact me.

Blessings

Wendy L.

 

Advent 2C: How to enjoy church with those 3 years and under.

Advent Candles and a children’s Prayer.

During Advent, many congregations will count down to Christmas using the 4 candle system. Usually they will be Purple or Blue with the Love candle (week 3) often in Pink.

MAKE: your own candle each week, cut an A4 sheet of cardboard in purple or blue (depending on what your church uses) write this week’s word, FAITH in any languages you use or know, or that are used by members in your church community (if you don’t know the right word, ask congregational members to write it for you). Cut a piece of 4cm yellow or orange (or both) of cellophane, crinkle the square, then stuff into the top of the candle.

Or you could purchase and download

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/advent/products/an-illustrated-advent-wreath?variant=15605449916514$US15, for 5 candles. HINT, Print base on thick paper.

You can also decorate a paper plate, and place each week’s candle around the plate until Christmas.

PRAY: (Stand tall with your hands, palms together over your head)

Little candle burning bright

Shine some peace

Into our lives

Amen

FIRST READING: Malachi 3:1-4

READ: The Jesus story book Bible pp.174

Make: a path, draw it or make it on the floor with material or cardboard. Be creative, you might like to add a body of water(blue paperer material) at the end of the path. Or you could make it out of felt.

Make a banner that says Get ready Use premade bunting in either paper or material and find letters to stick on or write on  Little ones can find the letters on a sticker sheet, even though they will not know the words. (Try Spotlight or Riot)

PRAY: Thank you God that you help us get ready for Big things to come. Amen

 

PSALM: Luke 1:68-79

READ: THE LION STORY BIBLE: Cousin John pp. 138-139

Make: a path, draw it or make it on the floor with material or cardboard. Be creative, you might like to add a body of water(blue paperer material) at the end of the path. Or you could make it out of felt.

Create a light house. You will need white heavy A4 paper, draw red lines every 4 cm or so,(i cut mine out of red paper and glued them on). Cut out 4 holes at one end (most under 3’s will need you to do this). Fold into a cylinder and place crushed up cellophane in the top where the holes are cut out.

 

 

 

SECOND READING: Philippians 1:3-11

READ:the board book version https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zjCfzd5FAw Bear says Thank you by Karma Wilson

OR https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NF_jHCAQ13k Bear says thanks by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-rcl-december-9-2018/

OR It was you Blue Kangaroo by Emma Chichester Clark. You can buy as an ebook https://www.amazon.com.au/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=It+was+you+blue+kangaroo as suggested by http://storypath.upsem.edu/lectionary-links-sunday-december-6-2015-2/

PLAY with toys in community such as dolls or animals or even cars, all doing things together (and being thankful)

PRAY Gratitude Prayer

Dear God I am thankful for _________ (complete with your child’s thoughts or make some suggestions.

GOSPEL READING: Luke 3:1-6

READ: The Lion Picture Book The Baptism of Jesus, p.240

OR The Beginner’s Bible p.306

COLOURING IN: https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2018-2019?variant=13700704632930 Once purchased (about $15 Aus ) it will supply you with colouring in sheets for the next 14 weeks)

MAKE: a path, draw it or make it on the floor with material or cardboard. Be creative, you might like to add a body of water(blue paper, or material) at the end of the path. Or you could make it out of felt.

 

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

 

TO Do LIST:

You might need to purchase

A4 heavy white paper

Red paper

a paper plate

texta’s

toy dolls

OR

toy animals

OR

toy cars

green and brown, blue material

OR felt board

green/brown felt pieces

Bunting

Stickers of letters

You might need to Print

https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/products/bible-story-coloring-pages-winter-2018-2019?variant=13700704632930 Once purchased (about $15 Aus ) it will supply you with colouring in sheets for the next 14 weeks)

Perhaps  https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/advent/products/an-illustrated-advent-wreath?variant=15605449916514

Or download

https://www.amazon.com.au/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=It+was+you+blue+kangaroo

Blessings

Wendy L

KISS Advent for grandparents, ok everyone!

As I prepared this, I was tired, jet lagged, and sick. More and more wonderful stuff kept coming in from my “sources” on the great ways to practice Faith Formation with the family for Advent. Or options to use for Intergen services. Overwhelmed did not come close to explaining how I was feeling.

So, I threw my hands up and went. Enough. Maybe I was only meant to pursue this blog approach to sharing the faith for 12 months. Then it occurred to me. If I was feeling bombarded how were the families feeling.

Now, for those of you reading who live outside of Australia, you need to know that December is the busiest month for families. It is the end of the school year. Our weather helps by providing us with longer, warmer days, so that lets us pack in way more in a day then is good for anyone. That is unless you are affected by our natural disasters such as Bushfires and Cyclones. In which case trauma, becomes a whole different topic. But usually, this is the season for end of concerts- school, ballet, music classes, work, and then there is the get to gather’s, usually around the BBQ in the extending daylight. This may be the time of the year when grandparents are called on the most. Adult children, need extra babysitting services for their offspring (your beloved grandchildren) as they try to stay social and fit in all the work commitments. Grandparents are required at ALL the end of Concerts/events. Many Grandparents are still working themselves and may very well have parents of their own that need extra care at this time of the year.

Overwhelming does not even cut it. Exhaustion in big servings, is the order of the day.

So how can we honour the season of Advent in our lives and our homes, and influence all the generations we have around us? KISS, yes Keep It Simple S (ok you know the rest). And a few extra kisses won’t go astray either!

Meditate

In the midst of the chaos, a moment to reflect, is a positive strategy for you and sets a good example for those around you.

Mine is simple, by sharing it I hope you will find something in your everyday that keeps you focused on the reason for the season.

I have a Magnolia plant that blossoms during Advent, The buds remind me of candles in their shape, and like a flame when the flower opens it spreads out exiting perfume and visual delight. Then like a candle it dies, turns brown, leaving like a candle the essence of what had been and what is to come. I love watching the plant bud, bloom and die, and it reminds me of Christ’s impact on the earth, our own short trajectory, and the continuity of God though history and our lives, from birth to death. This simple visual meditation, opens me up to listening for God.

IMG_3178

In a previous home we had two beautiful Christmas Wattles that bloom red flower crowns during Advent. The colour reminded me of Pentecost and that we celebrate God bursting into this world in human form for us.

If you like to colour in, you might like A sanctified Arts Advent book, http://sanctifiedart.org/draw-near-advent-devotional/

I settle down when everyone has gone to sleep, make a cuppa, I like lavender and chamomile at the moment, and just spend a quiet few minutes this way.

But you might prefer the very quick, 3 minute in fact, 3 minute retreat by Sacred Spaces, you can down load the app on your phone https://www.loyolapress.com/3-minute-retreats-daily-online-prayer?utm_source=sacredspace&utm_medium=banner&utm_content=3mr-module&utm_campaign=3mr

Decorating for Advent

How do you send a firm signal that this is a home celebrating Christian Advent and Christmas not just commercial Christmas?

Think about the way you decorate,

what are really simple ways to make a small statement

Our stocking say Hope, Peace, Love and Joy

12375222_998131836915933_3006785361030014019_o

Keep an Advent candle circle in a prominent place. I add a candle each week as we count down. Those family members who only visit a church with you on Christmas day will have been trained by you to understand what this means.

OR have a cake at the end of each weekly family dinner, with a purple candle on it for each week of the advent calendar. So start with 1 purple(or blue) candle, then 2 purple (or blue) candles 2 purple and 1 pink- week 3, then 3 purple 1 week. (many years ago I read of this idea but I can’t find the reference)

Use purple and white in your Christmas Tree decorations and choose decorations that can help you tell a faith story to your grandchildren. Better still get them to help you make them.

REMEMBER the object is to share the faith story, these are just prompts for others to ask, or for you to tell about your faith.

Advent Calendar

Make this beautiful version, better still get the children to help you make it https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/56545040/posts/3463

or use the ideas’ here https://prayingincolor.com/2018

Sing/Music

Fill the house with meaningful Christmas music, Choose a Christmas radio station, or use Spotify Try Christian Children’s Kids songs

Or my favourite https://matthewwest.essentialfan.com/products/heart-of-christmas-cd

Choose a style of music that suits you or your family members. from traditional to Colin Buchanan https://colinbuchanan.com.au/products/jingle-jingle-jesus-mp3-album-and-individual-songs or

Seeds that have a strong Biblical base https://www.seedsfamilyworship.com/product/seeds-of-christmas-ep/

Create a family band.

Family Reflection options

You can grab one of the many family reflection options such as https://store.illustratedchildrensministry.com/collections/illustrated-family-resources/products/an-illustrated-advent-for-families

or http://www.ctmresourcing.org.au/2018-intergenerational-advent-resource

Great for sharing with grandchildren through the Advent season as they come and go https://www.sallylloyd-jones.com/jesus-storybook-bible-advent-guide/?fbclid=IwAR0BadoUNx8EWZzLL5HauW7IEFm0Lt-3hkbOeAFHh0712Y18V1wcsvGLCQQ

Keep it Simple

red kiss neon light signage on dark lit room
Photo by Tim Mossholder on Pexels.com

Show your family how easy it is to fit Advent into the busiest time of the year.

That faith enhances, not weigh’s us down.

Hopefully they may find that faith is what has been missing from their lives.

Lead the way.

Blessings

Wendy L.