*Offer this children’s time near the beginning of your worship service. After the opening hymn or even prelude (depending on how your worship is structured) invite the children to come forward. Have someone from the congregation come running in toward the children (Idea: could be Mary Magdalene, or one of the disciples in costume!) saying: “The tomb is empty! Jesus is not there! He is raised from the dead like he said he would be!” (Or if you are using the John 20: 1-18 text change it to Mary saying, “I have seen the Lord!”) “Do you remember that just on Friday we laid him in the tomb but now-it’s empty! The stone was removed and there were men, like angels, saying that Jesus would rise from the dead! It’s true! We’re so happy! We could shout happy words all day long such as Hooray, Yippee, or I know Alleluia! Jesus is alive and now we can live with Jesus forever too! We need to shout this to the whole world! Alleluia!
It would be fun to have a way to make the “Alleluia” even more exciting…let’s see I know! Every time you hear the word Alleluia today you can… (here is your choices from easiest to pull off to more planning: the children and adults can clap, ring jingle bells, wave a streamer, wave their hands, use a clapper, or if you have chime bells to hand out). We might be singing Alleluia or saying Alleluia, it doesn’t matter! Wave, clap, ring every time! Let’s practice! (Hand out the objects if you are choosing to do that.) “Alleluia!” Alleluia!” “Alleluia!” Listen for that word all morning!
*If your pastor can, add the word “Alleluia” into his/her sermon a couple of times at least to engage the children. And let’s face it, the adults too!
Have a large drawing of the tomb with the stone rolled away either hanging where it’s accessible to people, or on a large table. Somewhere on the tomb or around the tomb have verse Luke 24: 5c “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen.” As people enter worship or during a dedicated worship station time, invite people to write in the empty space of the tomb where they look for and/or experience Jesus in their daily lives. Where do they see new life each day?
Alleluia! Christ is Risen! Living God, we look for you in our lives. We look for all of the ways that you give us life, hope and love. Like Peter, we are amazed and like the women at the tomb we can’t wait to share this good news! Alleluia! Jesus lives! Amen!