Another Stress Free Nativity Script

Another Stress Free Nativity Script

*Introit O Come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant, O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem; Come and behold him, born the king of angels; O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him O come, let us adore him, Christ the Lord. Opening Hymn – #164, Tell Out My Soul Narrator: On my way into church this morning I got into a conversation with a guy on the bus. I mentioned that today was our children’s Christmas programme. He said he didn’t believe in Christmas, at least not in the way the story is typically told. I said I thought that was interesting because our minister said pretty much the same thing every year. He was intrigued by that and said he might visit our church sometime. I said, “Why don’t come today and see for yourself?” He said he might just drop by sometime. Worship is like a stage play. In worship we act out the story that we then try to live out there in the real world. Sometimes folks would like worship to be entertaining. I would imagine that God might like that as well. But God is not the one to entertain us; we are the actors and God is the audience. If we want worship to be entertaining, then it is up to us to put on a good show. Today we re-enact the story of the birth of Jesus. We are all wearing various costumes. Maybe you’ve always wanted a part in the Christmas play. Now’s your chance. Even if you’re not dressed like an angel, you can...
Youth Bible Study – The Parable of the Tenants (Mark 12:1-12)

Youth Bible Study – The Parable of the Tenants (Mark 12:1-12)

Opening Activity: Spoons You will need: a standard deck of cards (no jokers), spoons (one fewer than there are players), suitable for 3 to 13 players. Arrange the spoons in a small circle in the centre of the table and deal four cards to each player. Each player tries to make four of a kind. The dealer takes a card off the top of the deck to have five cards in his hand, removes one and passes it facedown to the left. Each player discards to the person on his left. The last player places his discard into a trash pile. Cards are picked up and passed quickly around the table until someone gets four of a kind and takes a spoon from the centre. Once the player with four of a kind takes a spoon, anyone can take a spoon. The player left without a spoon is out of the game. If at any time the draw cards run out, pause to reshuffle the trash pile and keep going. The winner is the last player remaining. The player who reaches four of a kind first has a variety of ways he can take the first spoon. A sneaky pull exposes those paying too close attention to their cards. A demonstrative grab leads to a wild free-for-all. Bible Study In the previous chapter of Mark we accompany Jesus as he rides into Jerusalem on a donkey. We see him curse a fig tree, which was a symbol of Jewish spiritual leadership, and watch on as an angry Jesus clears the temple of money lenders. Clearly irked, the religious leaders...
Nativity story as told by kids – Video

Nativity story as told by kids – Video

A creative video telling the nativity story from the fresh and unique perspective of children. Ideal for church groups or school chaplaincy. I really love this retelling of the nativity story – used  recently for our school Christmas assembly with pupils engaging well. http://www.childrenandyouth.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/The-Christmas-Story-_-Kids-Perspective.mp4 You can become a patron of Children & Youth through Patreon. In return for your monthly support, we offer first access to a range of youth and children’s work resources. Thank you for being part of the C&Y team. More school based resources...
Modern Retelling: If Jesus was born today

Modern Retelling: If Jesus was born today

Mary didn’t usually respond to Facebook contact from strangers, but she assumed Angel Gabriel was that Spanish guy she’d had a thing with in Magaluf last summer and accepted his friend request. As it turned out, Angel wasn’t Spanish at all; he was a well-spoken Englishman and crucially, a messenger sent by God to tell her that she was in the family way and would shortly be giving birth to a child conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit. Angel said that, ideally, he’d been looking for a virgin but he soon realised, in 21st century Rochdale, this just wasn’t realistic – so he’d plumped for Mary. Mary was perplexed, but accepted her fate. The worst bit was telling her fiance, Joseph. He’d gone to such a lot of effort to organise the flash mob proposal only a month ago and now she had to confront him with the news that she was up the spout courtesy of the Holy Ghost. Naturally, he was a little unsettled by the whole thing. In fact, he wasn’t above going on The Jeremy Kyle Show to get a DNA test once the baby was born, just to clear things up. But for now, he decided to be reasonable about it and stick by his woman. They hadn’t wanted to be teenage parents, but at least they’d get a flat of their own now. Joseph’s sister said she’d lend them a cot and they made a gift list on the Mothercare website. Shortly before the baby was due, the couple took a gamble by heading to the new Aldi in Bolton. It...
Children’s Sermon: The Power of Believing

Children’s Sermon: The Power of Believing

Children’s Talk: The Power of Believing This was the script I used for a recent children’s talk. I’ve been keen for quite a while to incorporate simple magic tricks. Feel free to use/adapt/make your own. When I was younger I was fascinated by a TV magician called The Great Suprendo. Thinking back now he only really seemed to do the same trick…he’d tear a sheet of newspaper into lots and lots of pieces and then magically put it back together again. As the excited 8 year old that I was…I truly believed in magic. I’d even go around the house using the Great Suprendo magic words PIFF PUFF POOF in the hope that I’d be able to do magic too. There was something special in not knowing how the trick was done. It creates excitement and intrigue and leaves open the opportunity that anything is possible. It leaves a lot of unanswered questions. I guess nowadays if we want to find something out we just search on the internet… ‘What Does Google Say?’ Seconds later we find the answer. We are surrounded by smart devices…phones, smart watches and even smart kettles. Maybe not having all the answers is okay Maybe the key is to be open minded and accept that anything is possible… So the next time you see a magic trick maybe the person really is magic Or the next time you see a beautiful sunset maybe that the universe does have a grand designer Or the next time you look in the mirror realising that you are special and loved by God So only one question remains…did...
Children’s Session – Who is Jesus?

Children’s Session – Who is Jesus?

Children’s Session –  Who is this Jesus? This session helps young people think about the different metaphors that are often applied to Jesus. Introductory Activities Guess Who Game – Ask as many questions as it takes to guess the face Who am I Post-it Note Game Write the name of a famous person or character on a sticky note for each child. Characters can be dead or alive, fictional or non-fictional, real or “cartoon”. Making sure that the player can’t see it, stick the note to their forehead. When everyone is named players mingle and walk around the room asking the sort of questions that can be answered by “yes”, “no” and “not applicable” to try to work out who they are. Cracker Challenge How many Crackers can the children eat without having a drink of water? What does it feel like to be thirsty? What does it feel like to have your thirst quenched? “but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:14 Snack: Chocolate pastries and juice Main Activities Game: Wrap a Leader Split the group into teams and assign a leader for each team. Provide wrapping paper, ribbon and tape. The first team to wrap the leader up the quickest and prettiest wins. Make sure they can breathe and make sure they person being wrapped up is comfortable with this. Game: Am I telling the Truth The leader will read out five statements about themselves and the children have to decide whether you are telling...
Video: The Easter Story

Video: The Easter Story

This is a nicely animated video of the Easter story set to the Adele song ‘Make You Feel My Love’. http://www.childrenandyouth.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/The-Easter-Story.mp4   You can become a patron of Children & Youth through Patreon. In return for your monthly support, we offer first access to a range of youth and children’s work resources. Thank you for being part of the C&Y...
Difficult Questions About Jesus

Difficult Questions About Jesus

This video has quite a few different applications. It could be used as an introduction to a discussion about the questions we all have about faith and religion. Or it could be used to help volunteers consider how children understand the stories in the Bible and how we can teach in their language rather than ours. What’s more important…our questions or our answers? You can become a patron of Children & Youth through Patreon. In return for your monthly support, we offer first access to a range of youth and children’s work resources. Thank you for being part of the C&Y...
Nativity Animation

Nativity Animation

This is a hand drawn Nativity animation that would could be used as a stand alone video, for reflection,  or as an introduction to a Christmas service. http://www.childrenandyouth.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Nativity.mp4 You can become a patron of Children & Youth through Patreon. In return for your monthly support, we offer first access to a range of youth and children’s work resources. Thank you for being part of the C&Y...
Stress Free Nativity Script

Stress Free Nativity Script

Every year around this time, congregations struggle to find a fresh way to retell the familiar story of the birth of Jesus. When I first started at St James’ this task fell to the Sunday School team and from the beginning of December the volunteers would rehearse a full script with written parts with each of the children. Every year the same thing would happen – rehearsals would take place with a different set of children than were present on the day of the actual Nativity. So after a chaotic and stressful few years we decided to change our approach and adopt a much simpler Nativity service. What’s great about this approach is that it takes no rehearsal and the only planning involved is acquiring the costumes. The only speaking part is the narrator and usually one of the older young people is chosen for that role. Also, everyone, adults and children, can participate at their comfort level – whether it is wearing a costume or singing in the pews. Below is a sample script that could be used. Welcome Introduce the nativity and give instructions to the congregation. At the beginning of each part within the script, children and adults are invited to come forward to the chancel to assume the character they want to be.  This means that in our nativity we might have only a few or many animals, angels, and shepherds, or several Marys and Josephs.  That’s okay!  (Volunteer helpers secure to each child’s head the tie-on mask of his or her choice, or give them the other appropriate props.  They also guide the children to the places...