This week is known to Christians as Epiphany Sunday. Epiphany means “manifestation” and commemorates when Christ was revealed to the Gentiles, who are represented by the Magi. Epiphany itself falls on January 6th, 12 days after Christmas and is known by some cultures as Three Kings Day.
We typically use an Epiphany lesson in Godly Play this week to talk about the Magi and their visit to the Christ child. Since we have new stories to implement this semester, we included information about the Wise Men in an earlier story and will not use the Epiphany story during this year’s spiral. Don’t worry…we’ll go back to it next year! It’s a cool one.
Our room colors will remain white, however. Next week we will be back in Ordinary (green, growing) time!
Beulah Land: Simeon
- Memory Verse: My eyes have seen your salvation…a Light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people, Israel! Luke 2:30a, 32
- Summary: This week’s story picks up after Christ’s birth when his parents take him to the temple to offer firstborn sacrifices. There, they encounter an elderly man, Simeon, who has been waiting for the Light of the World to, as the story words it, “grow and shine and fill the world and bring light to the people who were poor and sick and lonely and scared.”
- I Wonder… : why Simeon believed the Light of the World was coming? why he kept on looking for Christ after years of nothing happening? how he knew baby Jesus was the Light of the World?
- Additional Follow-up: Simeon was an old man. He had waited a LONG time for the arrival of Christ! Talk about waiting with your child. Have them ask an older believer (like a grandparent) a story about waiting for Jesus. Begin making connections between Old Testament stories and Christ. Our favorite New Zealand kids have another video that might help!
Godly Play I & II: Holy Baptism
- Memory Verse: Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call. Acts 2:38-39
- Summary: Today children will talk about baptism. Baptism can be a difficult topic among Christians as there are many beliefs about when and why we use this sacrament. What your children will hear today is that Christians baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They will also hear God’s name as Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer. They will also learn that all ages of people are baptized. However, since we are from a reformed tradition and hold to the belief and practice of paedobaptism (Infant Baptism), the lesson will use a baby to display baptism.
- I Wonder…: if you have been baptized? if you can remember seeing someone baptized? what it means to be baptized? if you remember the song Red Mountain sings when someone is baptized into the church?
- Additional Follow-up: Sing I Am Jesus Little Lamb together. Remind your child of his/her baptism story. Practice baptizing baby dolls at your house and see what all your child has noticed from baptism services! Parents, here is a video for you that gives a good explanation of Covenant Theology and infant baptism if you are curious!