Tag Archives: Pentecost

Children’s Sermon – “Light the Fire” Acts 2 May 15, 2016 Pentecost Year C

Prepare: You will need rubbing alcohol, a large sturdy pot and a smaller pot or metal bowl. Fill the large pot with water and place the bowl in so it floats. Fill the bowl with rubbing alcohol and light on fire. This fire will be protected in the pot/bowl but still visible. It will last about 5 – 10 minutes and then go out on it’s own. We recommend you practice first.

20130822-223520.jpgGathering–One way is to gather at the beginning and do your children’s sermon at the beginning instead of in the middle of worship. You can light the fire with them in the back and then lead a processional to the front. Or you can gather at your normal time and have a helper who lights the fire and brings it out. Do not light it close to the children as they may lean in too close.

20130822-223633.jpgooo, we have a fire today! Wow! Not just the candles are lit but there is a fire. Does anyone know what today is? yes it is the day of Pentecost. We hear the story of when the people were gathered for a festival and a great wind blew in and then flames of fire appeared. (The Jesus Storybook Bible would be a great way to tell this story by reading it)

Have you ever heard the phrase… “I feel on fire”–what does that mean? It means that there is a light a passion an excitement for something. The Holy Spirit has an excitement and a passion and a love for each of you here and for the world. The Holy Spirit is here to unite us with others, no matter how different or alike we are, and the fire is one way for us to remember to be excited about sharing God’s love and living as people who are loved by God.

sing together: Light the Fire or This Little Light of Mine

20130822-223749.jpgHoly Spirit, thank you for your excitement for us, for your ongoing time with us and for sending us your love so that we may love too. Amen

 

20130822-223908.jpg+ May you know the fire of love inside you always +

 

 

FaithCross_WorshipSpirit Windsock: Make a Holy Spirit Fire Windsock with these materials to remember that the Spirit is blowing in your life all the time and sending you out with an excitement for living with Jesus.

Have sheets of cardstock paper with the words “Come Holy Spirit” written on them. Have markers, crayons, or those fun dot/bingo paint markers for stamping and decorating the paper. Next roll the paper and staple it closed. Attached string with staples or with a hole punch and then tying the string to make a handle. Next, have red, orange and yellow streamers and a stapler for attaching the streamers to the bottom. Make a sample ahead of time.

 

Children’s Sermon Matthew 21:23-32, 16th Sunday after Pentecost, September 28th, 2014

Preparation: posterboards or white boards, post it notes, markers, examples
optional–random acts of kindness video

20130822-223633.jpgGather the children together with you. Tell the second part of the gospel story or retell it. One idea would be to have some men/boys act it out if you can arrange for that. But retell saying, “Jesus is telling us that what we say and what we do are important but that in the end how we show God’s love and treat others is how we live a life in God. ”

20130822-223315.jpgSo I was thinking about this, about what I say about my faith and what I do about my faith. One thing I say about my faith in God is that I know God is with us all the time. Now how could I show that to people? (take ideas) This week one thing I did to show that is I listened to a friend of mine that I work with who told me how worried she was about her mom who lives far away. I listened to her stories about her mom and I gave her a hug and I encouraged her that she was showing love and care for her mom even while she was far away.

Here on one of my poster boards it says SAY, so I am going to take this sticky note that says I say God is with us all the time and put it here. Now this other board says DO, so I am going to take this sticky note and put Listen on it and put it up here. (If you have time, brainstorm some other ideas with the kids and do a couple more)

OPTION: Here is where you could show the random acts of kindness video or you could have it playing at a worship station.

I have lots of sticky notes and I am going to put this posters in back for our worship station today. I would like you to think of something you say about your faith or about God and something you do and put them up on the boards. You may need to help your parents or people sitting near you do this as well. (distribute sticky notes how is best for you–hand out, have in pews, have at a worship station)

20130822-223749.jpgLet’s pray. Jesus, your love is with us all the time. Help us to say what we know about you to others and help us to act in ways that show your love. Amen

20130822-223908.jpg+ May your lips speak of Jesus and may your actions show God’s love for the world. +

 

FaithCross_WorshipPut up the poster boards with SAY and DO and have sticky notes available for people to write what they Say about their faith and what they Do about their faith.

Children’s Sermon Matthew 18: 15-20, September 7, Year A Pentecost13

Preparation: Have different colors of paper or stickers or a simple way to put kids in groups of three. Make sure real little ones are with older ones.

20130822-223454.jpgGather children with you and ask, ‘what does it mean to gather?’ Take answers. Explain that gathering is to bring things or people together. “For example, I have these papers (stickers, whatever you are using) all gathered together and spread out. Now I am going to hand each of you one and I want you to gather with the other kids that have the same thing as you. Sit knee to knee with them once you find them”

(Hint–to make this go faster, have older kids prepped ahead of time OR give kids near each other the same object/color. You may also want older kids or teens prepared to be with a group or sit between them to help them along)

20130822-223633.jpgWe heard from Jesus today that when two or three are gathered in Jesus name, then he is there. Now we know that Jesus is with us all the time, even when we are alone. So what do you think happens when more people are gathered? Take answers. Talk about how Jesus is in the midst of that and helps us to reach others, show each other Jesus is there, and live out Jesus’ love.

“Now I would like you in your group to think of one way you could gather in Jesus name. Let’s start with an easy one. One way we gather with two or more is right here in worship! And when we gather here in worship we connect with each other and with God. Now you think of other places or ways you gather either here, or at home, or at school, or somewhere you volunteer.” Give them a minute. Then ask, “Ok, where are they places you gather?” Take their answers. Help them if needed. Then add to each one how that is gathering in Jesus name. For example–at home they gather for a meal and pray, or prayer before bed. At school they gather on the playground and gather in Jesus name when they are kind to a new kid or invite a lonely one in to their game. At a park they gather and Jesus is there in the way they treat each other. Maybe they are in boy scouts or girl scouts and they gather for an activity in helping someone else. Give them ways they can connect what they do each day with Jesus’ presence.

20130822-223749.jpgJesus, you promise to be with us when we are together and when we serve you. Help us to remember you are with us in all the ways we gather. Help us to remember to pray and connect with you. Thank you for your love. Amen

20130822-223908.jpgMake the sign of the cross while saying:

God in my head
God in my heart
God on my left
God on my right

Children’s Sermon Pentecost 10A Matthew 15:10-28 August 17, 2014

Preparation: The word for peace or love or hope or a mixture of them in different languages–you can do this visually with a collage that you make or use one of the links below. Prepare a handout or a worship station (more on station below under Faith+Worship)
A list of languages and the word for peace from Columbia University
An image of Peace in different languages

20130822-223315.jpgGather the children with you. Ask them listen to you as you speak the word peace–it will help if they close their eyes (or substitute another word if you like) Say the word peace in english first, then say it in a few different languages. What did you hear? (take their answers, exploring that maybe they are not sure what they heard)

20130822-223633.jpgThose were all different ways of saying peace in different languages. I want to teach this word because our readings today talk about what comes out of our mouths being what is from our heart. And that when dirty things come out of our mouths, which the bible passage called things that defile, it is like our hearts are dirty. What would some of those things be that may be ugly that we say sometimes? (help them think of things like lying, exaggerating, not nice names, teasing that hurts people, etc) And our hearts probably don’t feel happy or kind when we are saying those things, but they feel closed up and hard (make a fist with your hand) So when our hearts are open (open fist) and willing to love, words that are good and kind and peaceful come out of our mouths and those are the kinds of words that help bring different people together. Can you think of some of those words? (take answers)

One way that we start to open our hearts and minds is knowing that others people, no matter how different they are from us, are a part of God’s world and they are children of God too. And when we learn about different people our hearts start to be open and not closed. So I wanted to give you some words for peace today in other languages. (either use the worship station for this or hand out an image or list of words and their languages.) Teach one or two of the words now and then instruct the children in the worship station if you are using it.

FaithCross_WorshipHave the words in different languages available on a handout or at a station on a poster board. Have paper and markers available and have some printed paper with a big word PEACE (or love, hope or all there) Then ask people to write down the different languages around the word peace and take them home and learn them.

20130822-223749.jpgJesus, God of peace, ____, _____, ______ (insert your choice of other language for peace) Help us to see others with open hearts and help us to have words that bring healing and love come out of our mouths. Be with all those who are hurt by words and help our world live in peace. Amen

20130822-223908.jpg+Go with God’s love to bring peace in the world+

Children’s Sermon Pentecost 7A Romans 8:26-39

Preparation: markers and paper with the words “what If” at the top (or print the whole poem if you like) either to hand out or at worship station

20130822-223454.jpg Gather the children with you. Ask, What kinds of things do you worry about? (take their answers) Yes, I worry about those things too sometimes (or add in your own worries). In fact I have this poem here by Shel Silverstein that lists all kinds of things that might be worrisome.
Read Poem:   Whatif by Shel Silverstein

Last night, while I lay thinking here,
some Whatifs crawled inside my ear

and pranced and partied all night long
and sang their same old Whatif song:
Whatif I’m dumb in school?
Whatif they’ve closed the swimming pool?
Whatif I get beat up?
Whatif there’s poison in my cup?
Whatif I start to cry?
Whatif I get sick and die?
Whatif I flunk that test?
Whatif green hair grows on my chest?
Whatif nobody likes me?
Whatif a bolt of lightning strikes me?
Whatif I don’t grow taller?
Whatif my head starts getting smaller?
Whatif the fish won’t bite?
Whatif the wind tears up my kite?
Whatif they start a war?
Whatif my parents get divorced?
Whatif the bus is late?
Whatif my teeth don’t grow in straight?
Whatif I tear my pants?
Whatif I never learn to dance?
Everything seems well, and then
the nighttime Whatifs strike again!

That is quite a list of what ifs! Sometimes I also think that all these what ifs and worries and things that could happen or event things that DO happen that are sad or scary, what if God does not love me anymore–??? Have you ever thought of that what if?

20130822-223633.jpgDid you hear our scripture for today though? I heard it loud and clear, let me read it to you. “For I am convinced–which means I am very, very sure and certain, that neither death nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height , nor depth,(–insert their worries here and say things like not war or divorce or darkness or lost teeth, etc) nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Do you Know what that means–not one single thing will ever make God’s love go away. Not for you, not for me, not for anyone. Phew… that is some good news, to know that love will be with us no matter what happens or does not happen.

FaithCross_WorshipI have these papers for you that say ‘what if’ on the top. I want you to go ahead and write or draw anything that worries you or scares you. Then after you do that, draw a BIG HEART over the top of it and write God’s Love in that heart to help you remember that nothing will separate you from God’s love.

20130822-224425.jpgJesus, help us remember, no matter what ifs we worry about, no matter what comes our way, that your love is with us to stay. Amen

 

20130822-223908.jpg+May you know God’s love is with you always+

 

Children’s Sermon July 6, 2014 Pentecost 4A Matthew 11:25-30

Preparation: picture of a yoke for oxen, yarn or ribbon or paper to connect children together, a rock and other props that might be fun for two hands tied together to try. You can also just have two volunteers for this part
for worship station–paper strips, one per person in congregation

20130822-223633.jpg Our reading from Matthew today talks about being yoked together–do you know what a yoke is? It is not something we see everyday now but in Jesus time it was a familiar thing.” Show the picture and describe how a yoke keeps the oxen together so that they can pull together and work together. “How do you think this feels to the oxen to be hooked together like this? I think it could feel hard and burdensome–but also it could make the work lighter and easier to be together. Let’s try an experiment.”

Option one: have enough yarn or ribbon to tie kids together loosely at the wrists. You will want to use enough yarn so that you can cut it and then they each end up tying a piece of their ribbon to their own wrist
Option two: have two volunteers (or prep volunteers ahead of time–acolytes can be great for this! ) that you will tie together with a ribbon or bandannas or string.

Tie the yarn or ribbon around two wrists and hook them together. Do not make it tight. “Ok, now that you are tied together, let’s see what you can do. Try waving together. Now try clapping! Try writing in the air (or have a pen and paper for them to try). Can you pick up this rock together? (have a small rock and a large rock, see which one is easier to pick up) “What is it like being yoked together? What is hard about it? what is fun about it?”

Jesus is teaching about how some things in life, even things in our faith or our religious practices can become difficult or a burden. He says that what he teaches and what he promises is that even as we are yoked together to him, we are also given rest. Our life in faith and walking with Christ will bring rest to our hearts and we can live connected to one another which makes the walk lighter and sets us free to be one in Christ in the world.

FaithCross_PrayALT Jesus, help us to be yoked to you so that our hearts and spirits can rest and also know you in all we do. Show us how to be connected with one another and share your love with all the people and all the nations.

FaithCross_BlessALT +May you rest in God and Be sure of Christ’s love for all +

FaithCross_Worship For a worship station–you can use this station as a connection to the children’s sermon and a way to broaden it out to the congregation. Take this time to explain how the station works if you have not already. **You can also tie this into July 4 celebrations in saying that God has connected us an our nation to other nations of the world and as we work together as a global community we become connected and we share Christ’s love throughout the world.**

Connected through the Holy Spirit: There are paper strips in the pews, in the back, and available from the ushers. Please take one and write your name and/or a prayer and/or names of loved ones who are not here today. Then use the tape in your pew to bend the paper into a circle and connect it with your neighbor’s paper. We will create a paper chain of prayers and names that will then be draped on the cross up front to remind us of how the spirit connects us to Christ and to one another.

Weekly Devotion Page for June 8, 2014

29 June 8 - Day of Pentecost.pubHere is the devotion page for the Seventh Sunday of Easter, June 1,  2014

Just click on the picture to download the PDF file!

We have started a new format for our inserts (starting with Pentecost, June 8, 2014).  To learn more about this format read this – Keeping up with what God is Doing,

Did you miss a week? Go to the Weekly Devotion page to download past weeks!

Keeping up with what God is doing!

ffjChildrenSermonChange is good! Or at least we hope that you will think so. Beginning June 8th, (Pentecost Sunday) Faith Formation Journeys weekly devotional will have a new look and focus. We will also be making some small changes to the Children’s Sermons. Why you ask? We don’t know about you, but in our congregations (Colorado, USA) the gathering for worship that happens primarily on Sunday mornings is shifting, faith formation opportunities and experiences are shifting and how faith communities are engaging their neighborhoods in which they are located is shifting. God is up to something and we feel that it’s very exciting and we want to walk with you and your faith community on this journey! We recognize that faith practices that are accessible to households of all  configurations is vital and necessary, so some of those pieces in our weekly devotional will be enhanced. How is it that we can live the message from the biblical scripture in our daily lives? How do  we practice thinking deeply about how God meets all of us in our lives, whether we are 8 years old and in the third grade or 80 years old and in an assisted living facility?

We want to equip our readers to really wrestle with what it means to live a life of faith in the love and mercy of Jesus Christ. We hope to help congregations connect what happens on Sunday morning with what happens in people’s lives Monday-Saturday and to what God is doing in their neighborhood. In our “Faith + Connect” section,  ideas for doing just that will be offered.

We also recognize that part of this shift is also about what happens when the community gathers for Sunday (or whenever) worship. The insight that active engagement with the biblical text enhances learning for all ages as well as retention of the message. Opportunities for all ages gathered to interact with one another during worship is a part of this engagement. In our Children’s Sermons, we will be adding a worship station idea or two each week to help you spark ideas for your context for cross generational worship opportunities.

As always, we are grateful for the support and the feedback from those of you who frequent this resource. Please give us your honest thoughts on these changes. We would love to start a dialogue on this site for idea swapping, support and affirmation as we try and keep up with what the Holy Spirit is doing among us all! God is at work in the world and we are blessed in our call to participate. It’s an exciting time to be the Church and we are blessed to be the Church with all of you! In Christ, Brigette, Gus and Leta