Tag Archives: Year B

Lent 3B John 2:13-25 March 11, 2012

Scripture: John 2: 13-25

Preparation: Pictures of the temple and a very large heart

Faith+Open: Gather children to you. Say, today in our Gospel reading Jesus goes into the temple, do you know what the temple was? Take answers and show your picture/s of the temple.

Faith+ShareThe temple was a place that people went to worship God, but it was also a place where all the rituals took place and where people could gather together. People at that time would bring animals and food and money to the temple to give to God. They needed a way to have the animals checked and a way to exchange money so they had the right kind for the temple. In order to do the rituals the best way it took a lot work. Jesus today goes into the temple and gets very angry at what is going on there. He says that the people have forgotten what it was that God meant to do by giving them a temple, a place to worship. He says that now that God is doing a new thing with Jesus. God is not just in the temple but is in Jesus and in the world. This story shows us not only that Jesus was very human and could get very angry like we get angry sometimes but that also God’s love was bigger than any temple or any building or any gift or sacrifice could ever hold. God’s love is so big that it bigger than anger and bigger than all the sins, all the things we can do wrong. So even though Jesus is angry with people in this story, Jesus is also declaring God’ love to be so very huge. 

I have here a very big heart so show God’s love. Do you think it’s even bigger than this heart? It sure is! I am going ask that all of you write your name on this heart because God’s love is big enough to hold us all. You can have children write their names during this time or tell them it will be in the back of the church or it will be out during the offering time for them to write one–whatever works best in your setting.

Faith+Prayer: Jesus, we know that you lived like we do. We know that you live in the world and that you are here with us in worship but that you are also everywhere and always with us. Help us to remember how big your love is and to share that big love with others. Amen

Faith+Blessing: Make the sign of the cross saying:
God in my head
God in my heart
God on my left
God on my right

~LB

Lent 2B Mark 8:27-38 March 4, 2012

Scripture: Mark 8:27-38

Preparations: Collect different kinds of crosses to show the children

Faith+Open: Gather the children to you. Say, I brought some crosses to show you today. There are all kinds of different crosses and different ways that we share our faith with crosses.  Take out some different crosses one at a time.  Share your different crosses, pointing out the differences. If you have one that is pretty, one that is more crude, etc. You may have crosses with different pictures or in various shapes. If you have an anchor cross, Jerusalem cross, etc. tell the children briefly what they are about.

Faith+ShareThere are many different ways that we show the cross–some really fancy and some really natural (like a wood one). One thing these crosses have in common though is what they mean. Today Jesus says to ‘take up your cross’. That is is an interesting and even difficult thing for Jesus to say. Jesus died on a cross and did have to carry his cross up the hill. But I don’t think that Jesus meant for us to carry big crosses up hills all the time. Picking up our cross is a way to think about and to act on following Jesus. Jesus doesn’t mean that all the ‘bad things’ that happen to us are crosses but instead he means that we have a way of life to follow. And when good things and when bad things happen, he promises to be there with us. 

Faith+Prayer: Jesus, you gave us the cross to help us follow you. We love you and we want to go your way. Be with us all our days and all our steps as we learn to follow you and as we remember your love. Amen.

Faith+Blessing: Make the sign of the cross saying:
God in my head
God in my heart
God on my left
God on my right

Transfiguration Children’s Sermon Year B

Faith + Open: gather the children to where you hold children’s time.  Ask: “Do you know that we have a special word that we use in the church to praise God for loving us? What word do you think that might be?(accept all answers) Well those are great words too but this is a neat one that I really like: it is Alleluia. Can you say that? Have you heard that in worship or in other places? We sing it most often before the Gospel is read and other place in the worship service. (Sing the Gospel acclamation Alleluia if you are comfortable!) Do you all know “Allelu, Allelu, Allelu, Alleluia, Praise Ye the Lord”? Let’s sing that!

Faith + Share: We sing that song and we are so happy that God loves us and gives us life with God forever! It is a wonderful and joyful song! Well today is the last Sunday before a season that we call Lent. On Ash Wednesday, this Wednesday, you will come to church and we will tell God how sorry we are about the things we shouldn’t do and we get a cross made from ashes put on our foreheads to remind us that we belong to God. It’s important to say we’re sorry and to admit when we have done something wrong, right?

Well, we think about that in Lent and we remember that God loves us so much that God sent Jesus to earth to tell us how much God doesn’t want the wrong things we sometimes do to hurt our relationship with God. God wants us close always! So we have a few weeks to think about how God loves us and how Jesus died on a cross out of love for us. To help us focus on that, we don’t sing or use the joyful word Alleluia for the whole six weeks of Lent. We wait to sing it again on Easter Sunday on the day that Jesus rose from the dead when we can celebrate that God gives us life forever too!

So I have a slip of paper for each of you that has the word Alleluia on it. We are going to put away the Alleluia’s for the next six weeks and to help us remember we will put the Alleluia’s in this box. (Have a large box covered in purple paper with Lenten symbols on it. Have the top open and be prepared to tie the box closed with string or ribbon.) On Easter morning will you help me take the Alleluia’s out so that we can sing it? All right!

Faith + Prayer: Loving God, we don’t want to not sing Alleluia, even for just a little while, but we also don’t want to take for granted your deep and everlasting love for us. Thank you for loving us and for being with us always. In the name of your Son Jesus who loved us enough to die for us, Amen.

Faith+Blessing: May your eyes be opened to see all the amazing works of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

*Note: if you have more than one service, use a different box for each service. On Easter morning have the slips of paper that the children put in the boxes attached to helium balloons that will rise up at the beginning of service on Easter. The more balloons the more exciting the effect! For more information on the burying of the Alleluias please see http://www.elca.org/Growing-In-Faith/Worship/Learning-Center/FAQs/Alleluias-During-Lent.aspx

~BW

Epiphany 6 1 Corinthians 9:24-27

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 9:24-27

Preparation: a Lighting McQueen toy.  Keep it hidden in a bag!

Faith+Open: As the children gather get, them ready for a silly competition.  For example, in my worship setting the children usually sit on the floor of the chancel.  I might have them all remain standing and have a race to see who can sit down criss-cross the fastest on the count of 3.

Faith+Share:  You guys sure can sit down fast!  Do you like to race? (Wait for a few answers.)  Have you ever been in a race that had a prize at the end?  Maybe a ribbon or a medal? (Get a few answers again.)  I brought a famous racer today, can anyone tell me about this guy?  What was he racing for (in the first movie!)?  That’s right, the Piston Cup!  Well, one of the Bible stories today Paul (remember him?  The guy who wrote all those letters?) writes about a race.  He talks about how when people race it usually for something that doesn’t last, like a trophy or a ribbon or, like in Paul’s day, a wreath that would dry up and be tossed aside.  Paul says that we also run a race with for a prize that lasts forever, but it’s not really the same kind of race.  Remember our friend Lighting here?  Well, at the end of the first movie he is racing against his two big rivals, Chick Hicks and The King.  Lighting is doing everything he can to win the race so that he can get the Piston Cup and a new team, but when Chick Hicks makes The King crash he stops and helps him, and loses the race!  But he wins a much better prize than a trophy because he stopped to help someone and to show real love a care.  That’s like the race Paul is talking about.  A race to learn how to love other people the way God loves us.  Paul is encouraging us to share God’s stories, and to show God’s love to everyone.  By doing that, we can be God’s light in the world and we can help other people win their races, too.

Faith+Prayer:  Loving God, teach us to run your race!  To love each other the way that you love us. Amen

Faith+Blessing: May your eyes be opened to see all the amazing works of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Epiphany 5 Year B Isaiah 40:21-31 (with Mark 1:29-39)

Scripture: Isaiah 40:21-31 (with Mark 1:29-39)

Preparation: If possible come in wearing something that makes it look like you have been working out (like running shoes, a sweatshirt) and bring a water bottle.

Faith+Open: Find a way to jog into the worship space (up the center isle or something like that).  Make it sound like you just made it in time as you call the children together, and act as breathless as possible.

Faith+Share:  Wow! Just made it!  I really thought that I was going to have to sit down before I got here, I was just so tired.  But, I knew that I really wanted to share this story with you today, so I prayed for a little more strength and ran as fast as I could!  The really funny thing, is that the story is about God giving us strength when we need it most.  Here, listen to it again
 
     He gives power to the faint
and strengthens the powerless
Even youths will faith and be weary,
and the young will fall exhausted
but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength
They shall mount up on wings like eagles
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.

Pretty cool, huh?  All of us get tired and want to stop.  Most of the time it’s ok to be tired, we can just head to bed or take a nap, but sometimes we need to keep going.  Can you think of some times when you need to keep going even if you are tired? (Give them a little time to think and answer.)  Those are all great reasons to keep going!  Sometimes it seems like we are going forever and never getting to the goal!  I know that when I was in school it felt like summer would never come, but I just kept working and trying and when summer finally did come I always felt so great!  God does more than just giving us strength and love.  The Gospel story today tells about Jesus healing people who are sick in many different ways.  All kinds of people come to Jesus so that he can help them to feel better and keep going!  And it seems like most of the people Jesus healed were too sick to come on their own, so other people bring them.  That is another way that God helps is, by giving us family and friends to carry us be with us when we need them.  So, even when we are weak or sick God finds a way to give us strength and help us to keep going.

Faith+Prayer:  Healing God, thank you for being our strength when we need it most! Thank you for putting people around us who love us and are willing to help us.  Be with us each day and give us strength to keep going, even when the task is hard and we are tired.  Amen.

Faith+Blessing: May your eyes be opened to see all the amazing works of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Epiphany 4 Year B 1 Corinthians 8:1-13

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 8:1-13

Preparation: Address an envelope to “The Children of (your church).”  Try to make it look like an actual letter from Paul, so the return address should be Ephesus.  Find a good sticker to serve as a stamp.  The only thing that needs to be on the letter inside is “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.”

Faith+Open: As the children gather, show them the letter and ask if any of them have every gotten a letter or card in the mail, wait for a few answers.

Faith+Share:  Today we heard a little bit of a really long letter.  The letter was written by a guy named Paul to one of first churches in a city called Corinth.  The part that we heard talks a lot about food, meat in particular.  There seems to be a whole lot of worry about what meat to eat, and if it’s ok to eat meat from temples that do not worship God and Jesus.  As I was reading through the part of the letter that we heard it seemed to me that Paul was kind of saying, “You know what?  This whole thing about meat is not really the point.”  I looked back at the beginning of the passage and saw this little sentence, “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.”

Pull out your letter here and show the children the words.

What the heck does that mean?  Well, let’s think about this another way.  Have you ever met a know-it-all?  Someone who thinks that they have all the answers?  Paul is talking to some people like that.  You see, the people of the church in Corinth were telling people that they knew what God wanted, and that all people should just live like them.  Paul says to them that they might be right, but being a know-it-all about it just makes people feel bad.  See, there were some people in that church who thought that it was wrong to eat the meat from the temples, they thought that God would not love them any more if they did eat it.  Paul said, if it makes some people uncomfortable then you should not do it, even if you know that God will still love you.  That comes back to our letter from Paul.  Being a know-it-all puffs people up, it makes the know-it-all seem mean and makes the people around upset.  But, if we listen to each other and act in love it builds us all up and makes us a stronger and happier group of people.

Faith+Prayer: :  Loving God, help us to being loving toward each other in all our actions.  Teach us to share what we know in ways that build up our community.  Help us remember that you love us no matter what.  Amen

Faith+Blessing: May your eyes be opened to see all the amazing works of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Epiphany 3 Year B Mark 1:14-20

Scripture: Mark 1:14-20

Preparation: Find a fishing net and some toy fish. Make sure that you emphasize the work “gather” throughout the children’s time.

Faith+Open: Call the children together by saying something like, “Come look what I caught!”  When they are close enough to see what is in the net give them a chance to see the fish.

Faith+Share: Today I have a net.  Look at these fish that I gathered in here.  It looks like I did pretty well, don’t you think?  If these were real fish I could eat for a few days on this many fish.  Well, maybe not, they are kind of small.  Have any of you ever gone fishing? (Leave a little time for them to answer.)  Have you ever used a net?  (Allow answers again.)  Usually, with this kind of net you would probably catch the fish on a pole, then use the net to scoop them into the boat.  In the Gospel lesson today we hear about some fishermen who use nets too, but their nets are huge!  They drag their nets behind them in the water and gather a bunch of fish, kind of like I have here (Drag the net a little like you are scooping the fish off the ground).

When Jesus sees these fishermen he knows that they would make good disciples and he calls to them.  He says, “Follow me and I will make you fish for people.”  They drop their nets and follow, but what do you think Jesus means?  Do you think he means they should drag nets along behind them and scoop people up?  (Give a second for the silly image to sink in.)  No, that wouldn’t work!  I think that Jesus means that he will teach them to gather people together, like the net gather  the fish.  Instead of a net, Jesus is going to teach his disciples the Good News that Jesus is bringing to the world.  People will gather around the stories and words of Jesus, and we can help by sharing the good news, too!

Faith+Prayer: :  Gracious God, teach us to gather around your word and be fishers of people, just like the disciples in this story.  Help us to share the stories about Jesus with other people and to show the world your love and peace.  Amen

Faith+Blessing: May your eyes be opened to see all the amazing works of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Epiphany 2 Year B John 1:43-51

Scripture: John 1:43-51

Preparation: Small toy of a large animal (like an elephant, or dinosaur), either in your pocket or in a small bag or backpack.

Faith+Open: As the children start to gather, call to them and say, “I have a whole elephant in my pocket!  Come and see!”  As the kids gather around, ask them what they think of you having a whole elephant in your pocket.  Take a few answers and then show them the toy.

Faith+Share: OK, I tricked you a little bit.  I did have an elephant in my pocket, but just a toy.  Sometimes this trick happens in a bigger way!  For example, in Kansas there is a sign by one of the main highways that says, “Come and see the World’s biggest prairie dog!”  Did you hear those three words again?  “Come and See.”  The prairie dog is huge, but it’s made out of concrete, it’s not real, just like the elephant.  We hear things like this all the time, maybe not exactly “Come and See,” but people talking about amazing, fantastic stuff that just isn’t real, or is not as amazing as they make it seem.

Today’s Gospel story has this same thing, an amazing, fantastic, unbelievable story, and it’s not quite what it seems; but this time it’s even better than it seems.  Jesus is talking to the people who will become his closest friends, his disciples.  Some of them just don’t quite believe that Jesus is who he says he is.  One in particular, Nathanael, says something kind of mean.  He says, how can Jesus be any good at all, look where he’s from!  Nothing good can come from that place.  His friend, Phillip says those three words, “Come and See.”  When Nathanael meets Jesus, Jesus tells Nathanael something that Jesus could not possibly know.  When Nathanael hears it, he believes that Jesus is the Son of God.  Jesus says, “but wait!  There’s more!”  If you think that was amazing, I tell you that you will see heaven opened up and the angels of God flying around me.  The story just gets better, Come and See!

Faith+Prayer: Amazing God, you keep surprising us with you love and mercy.  Help us to open our eyes and see the wonders of the world you made.  Open our hearts so that we might love each other as you love us. Amen.

Faith+Blessing: May your eyes be opened to see all the amazing works of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Baptism of Jesus Year B Mark 1:4-11

Scripture: Mark 1:4-11

There are so many wonderful children’s stories on baptism. Consider for this Sunday reading the Gospel from the Jesus Storybook Bible as one way to tell the story. Other resources are Welcome, Child of God by Anne Ylvisaker–a very short board book that can be read in worship. Or Come Right in Your Home God says when we are Baptized. These books could be read at the beginning or in the midst of this children’s sermon if you have enough time or they could be out on display for ideas for others. Augsburg FortressWashed and Welcome series has some great resources. 
Also a note that the children’s sermon for January 1 could be adapted for this Sunday as well

Faith+Open: Gather the children with you either in the usual place or around the baptism fount. One idea would be to have the fount up near the altar for this Sunday.

Faith+Share: Today we are remembering and focusing on the baptism of Jesus and what it means for us to remember our baptism everyday. What are some things that you do everyday? (take answers–brush teeth, eat, drink, etc) Yes, we do all those things everyday! There is something that was not mentioned that I would like us to do everyday as well–that is remember our baptism. Do you know what baptism is? (take answers and fill in with information if needed while summarizing) Yes baptism is when a person, lots of times a baby, is marked as a child of God with water and oil. We say you are ‘sealed with the Holy Spirit and marked with the Cross of Christ forever’. We are baptized once, but we are to know forget about it but remember and live out that we are children of God everyday.

OPTION: insert one of the stories or show pictures of Jesus baptism from a children’s Bible.

One way that we remember this is by knowing that the Holy Spirit is with us all the time. We are given the Holy Spirit but we also give the love of the Holy Spirit to others. Can you put one hand on your tummy and another out in front of your mouth? Now take a deep breath in and feel your tummy go up. (Do this together). Now let that breath out and feel it on your hand. Our breath goes in and out everyday just like the Spirit is with us and goes out to those around us everyday. We can take deep breathes in and out to remember and to know God is with us all the time. We can also remember our baptisms when we use water–like when we brush our teeth or take bath and we cans say a prayer.

Faith+Prayer: Let’s practice that now: Keep your hands on your tummy and take a deep breath in and out. Now prayer with me. God, thank you for your gift of baptism. Help me remember that I am a child of God everyday. Help me to share your love and grace. Amen

Faith+Blessing: Go in peace remembering you are a precious child of God + in the name of the Father Son and Holy Spirit.

Christmas 1 Year B Luke 2: 22-40

Scripture: Luke 2:22-40

Faith+Open: Gather the children around the baptismal font.

Faith+Share: Ask: Does anyone know what this is? What do we do here? (baptize babies, children, adults) That’s right! We baptize people of all ages and promises are made to them. God’s promise of eternal life and love is stated, parents promise to teach their children about God both at home and at church and we as a congregation promise to also teach them about God and be willing to help them in their faith. All of these promises were also given to you!

How can we teach people about God? (Reading the Bible, praying, singing, talking about God with them, someday teaching Sunday school, etc.) Who teaches you about God? ( Accept all answers)

In today’s Bible story we hear about two people Simeon and Anna. They were special people who lived in the temple praising God all day and all night. One day Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to church just like your family brought you this morning. Simeon and Anna held the baby Jesus and gave him a blessing and told his parents how special Jesus was, just like at your baptism. We are so blessed that God gives us people in our lives to tell us how special we are to God!

Faith+Blessing: Make sure that there is water in the baptismal font. Dip your hand in the water and bless each child by saying: “God I thank you for ______(this child) bless them forever.”

Faith+PrayerGod, thank you for giving us people who tell us how much you love us! Help us to tell others that you love them too! Thank you for your son Jesus, Amen.