A man holds a child during Holy Eucharist at Trinity Church

3 Ways Into Sunday’s Stories for Children: A New Season

The Third Sunday After Pentecost

Summer has begun! The summer solstice on Tuesday, June 21, was the longest day of the year for us, which doesn’t mean there was extra time, but the sun was up longer than any other day this year. New York City children have just completed another school year. The earth has its climate seasons, which are different in different parts of the world. It’s winter in Australia right now. Different faiths observe different holy days (holidays) each year. There are many seasons and cycles in our lives, and we mark the beginnings and endings of some of them together.

Our church lives follow a pattern, too, which we call the liturgical calendar. Right now, we are in the longest liturgical season: The Season after Pentecost. It takes up almost half the year! Our next season is Advent, which is when we get ready for Christmas. That seems SO far away, doesn’t it?

Each of us also has our own unique cycles and patterns, but none of us stays the same forever. We have patterns and cycles in our habits, and in our feelings, and in our reactions to things that happen. Sometimes we can control these, but no matter what, they will go through changes. And, no matter what, God is with us always.

Print, fold, read, and color the story booklet of the Psalm.

A line drawing of Psalm 77 picturing a person remember the good things God has done

1. Sing and Dance

This Sunday is the last Children’s Time until September, but we will remain in touch with the weekly 3 Ways resources. And our families will have time to hang out together in the churchyard during Summer Sundays at 10am July 10–August 7. We hope that you will enjoy a season of rest, play, friends, family, and fun — with music and dancing! 

Here are a couple of songs that we sang and danced with in Children’s Time in person and online this year: Sing When the Spirit Says Sing and We Are Marching in the Light of God.

2. Play and Pray

Play Face Charades. Partner up. Sit across from each other. Person One expresses a feeling with their face. Person Two guesses the feeling by saying, “God is with you in your _______ (joy, sadness, anger, curiosity, etc.).” Switch roles. 

Pray: Dear God, please be with me (or name another person) in my (or their) season of _______ (name a feeling, activity, or circumstance, e.g., change when they move, nature at camp, happiness when we see grandma, etc.)

3. Create

Create a Seasons Journal. Remember a time when something happened and you had strong feelings, or when your feelings or body was hurt and then healed. Draw the shape of the whole experience. Was it a U shape — an up time, then down, then up again, but in a new place? Was it a spiral, and you cycled back toward the same or similar feeling? Was it a straight or squiggly down or up arrow? Where did you end up? Try to remember if you felt God’s presence during that season. Did another person help you? Mark the place on the shape when the season started to change. Sometimes naming or visualizing our spiritual and emotional seasons can help us. Add pages while reflecting on your day or when something happens, good or bad. 

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