For the last 10 weeks the RiverKids (along with the River Youth and the larger church) have been enjoying an exciting series called "The Power of Holy Spirit in Ordinary Time". The goal of the series is to help the children explore and experience the amazing gift of the Holy Spirit in our daily lives.
Here's a closer look at what we have been doing to help the children access and interact the quiet and constant presence of the Holy Spirit:
9/9: Jesus' Baptism
The children experimented with ink and coffee filter to imagine how the Holy Spirit breaks out from the sky, comes through Jesus, to us, to others and into all the world.
9/16: Holy Spirit comes to everyone
The children learned about the temple in Jesus' time and how the walls divide people into groups: gentiles, women, Israelite men, priests. We talked about how the temple's curtain tore apart, because the Spirit of God broke out of the holy of holiest, crossed all the walls of hostility, and came to everyone.
9/23: The Examen
The children listened to the Examen audio and reflected on their week by drawing on a large piece of paper together.
9/30: Stronger than Darkness
The children listened to the story about Jesus touched people who were sick/unclean. We discussed how instead of Jesus becoming unclean like them, the unclean people became clean. The Holy Spirit in Him has the power to touch the darkness, the sickness, and brokenness and bring light and life.
10/14: When Two Worlds Meet
We listened to the story of the Samaritan woman, who brought many people to Jesus, because of what she told them. The children wrote words of affirmation for someone special on a postcard to be mailed.
10/21: Darkness to Light
We listened to the story of Saul, how he was blind and now he saw. Using black paper and pastels, the children drew how the Holy Spirit is like a bright light that helps us see.
10/28: Holy Spirit Our Guide
We listened to the Parable of the Good Shepherd, and discussed how we would like to spend time with Jesus. The children drew comic strips of their special time and conversation with Jesus.
11/4: Holy Spirit the Comforter
We discussed about Jesus' promise of the Holy Spirit, our comforter. Children expressed their feelings through color, drawing, and emoji stickers and reflected on what the Holy Spirit might speak or impress upon them.
The children listened to the healing stories of Jesus. We acted out the story and learned how to pray for healing for others (watch their performance on The River NYC Families Facebook Group)
Last Sunday 11/18, we wrapped our series with the story of the birth of Jesus. The children made an ornament or necklace out of wooden discs to remind them that God is with us, Emmanuel.
The wooden discs were cut out from tree branches, possibly part of the same tree, or same branches even. This helps us to remember that we all came from the same tree, we are all connected too through the Holy Spirit, with each other, and with the whole world.
For our current story of the week, please check out "Riverkids This Week" on the RiverApp.
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