Saturday, 10 February 2018

Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday and Printable Lent Journey Booklets

Easter is coming way sooner than seems possible! Lent starts next week so here are some ideas to get things going...

Shrove Tuesday is traditionally the day when people use up all of the rich foods in their homes, ready for the Lent fasting to begin. This is not a cooking activity (because every time I make pancakes it is a total disaster!), but it is an active way to celebrate and thank God for the good gifts He has given us.



Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent, and a day where we have a chance to say sorry for things we have done wrong and to think about our lives. This post contains a simple interactive liturgy, an 'ash' related prayer activity and a craft to draw out the themes of the day.



Some simple ideas to help families engage with the season of Lent. The printable booklet includes prayers, activities, and colouring sheets.



Monday, 29 January 2018

Exploring God's Character: 'God is...' Play Dough Mat



At Cafe church last week we were talking about the different aspects of God's character and how different people are drawn to different pictures of who He is.  We looked at different images from the Bible...

  • A Father (Hosea 11: 1-4)
  • A Shepherd (Psalm 23)
  • A Mother Hen (Matthew 23:37)
  • A King and a Warrior (Psalm 24: 8-9)
  • The Creator (Isaiah 40: 28)
  • Love (1 John 4: 7-8)
  • A Potter (Jeremiah 18:1-6)
  • A Fortess, a Rock and A Shied (Psalm 18:1-3)
...and then talked about who God was to us.  

This play dough mat was made to help children to explore their ideas in a hands-on way.

To print the mat click here.

Laminate the mat before use if you want to use it multiple times!


Tuesday, 23 January 2018

A light to show your way: Ideas for Candlemas and the Presentation of Jesus in the temple

The story of Jesus being presented in the temple is full of amazing imagery from Simeon and Anna about light and Jesus' power to set people free.  If you are covering the story this Sunday (and even if you aren't!) here are some ideas to help you...

Activities




Light of the world Sun catchers

Light of the World Play dough Mat

Oil and paper sun catchers 

The Lord is my Light reflective colouring




Prayer activities to bring out the theme of Jesus bringing light and rescue 


Light to the world
Use print outs of world maps or of the local area and use highlighter pens to mark areas on the map. Pray that Jesus will bring his light and hope to those areas.

Candle Prayers
Give each child their own candle. Ask them to think of a situation in the world or their life where there is worry or sadness or loss. Ask Jesus to bring his light to those situations

Bubble wrap worry prayers
Tell God what you are worried about and pop a bubble on the bubble wrap as a sign of giving that worry to God and asking him to help you.

Exploration basket for younger children 

torches, battery operated candles, yellow and black fabrics, yellow and red ribbons on curtain rings, sleep masks, crowns, wax candles, glitter bottles, hearts, foil, globe ball




Monday, 15 January 2018

Wiping tears from their eyes: Spray paint prayers

He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death, sadness, crying, or pain. All the old ways are gone.  Revelation 21:4




Sometimes the life can be sad and worrying. It is important to acknowledge that children feel these emotions and I strongly feel that it is part of our ministry to help them to express to God what makes them feel sad.  I love Revelation 21 because it really paints a picture of a place where God is and where all that makes this world sad is washed away forever. This prayer activity is based on that hope.

You will need: paper (watercolour paper is especially good), small spray bottles, water, paint, stiff cardboard (I used an Amazon box), scissors

Before you start the activity put a small amount of paint in the spray bottles and water it down so that it will easily spray onto the paper.

Ask children to think about People who are going through difficult times or situations that are hard, or of something that makes them sad.  Give them cardboard and scissors and get them to cut out shapes that reflect what they are thinking about- it might be an initial letter, a heart, or some other relevant shape.

Get children to place their shape on a piece of paper and to hold it down firmly. Spray water over the shape and pray that God will see the tears of sadness for that person or place and bring his hope and new life. Carefully remove the shape and see the space that has been protected underneath as a symbol of the hope and protection God brings.