Tuesday, January 06, 2009
Christmas and New Year Children's Pastor Reflections
I have had my first Christmas and New Year here.
So different in so many ways but not in others - I'm a creature of habit, bringing some ideas from last place to this place - for example, by ditching Santa and cheap-ish presents for childrens' Christmas party in favour of a couple of hours at a soft play centre, with opportunities for parents to mingle and chat. (Do kids really need another soft toy? I think they prefer playing with one another, laughing, running about and eating!)
And of course a children/family pastor anywhere in the world has to incorporate the Nativity into a worship service. So, with the help of a seasoned thesp who is an expert in working with children (she writes assemblies and books on leading assemblies!), we put together a short nativity that involved every one of the children in some way.
My favourite moments were the escaping angel Gabriel (who loved Mary and Joseph so much that they were followed on their journey to Bethlehem) and the puking wise man. Actually, puking in a small confined space and then continuing to be sick all the way out the door, in front of the senior pastor's shoes and on my folder.
A couple of days later I managed to present my first ever Christingle service. Not being a paid up Angligang I had no idea what the legend/myth/lie behind the orange/candle combo was and an internet search provided me with three possible stories. I plumped for one that sounded like the one the Senior Pastor used last year and allegedly I sounded convinced. Hope it was true, don't want to think that I lied in church!!!
Although one of the kids team had commented to me that Christingle was a waste of good oranges I have to admit that it was very moving to look out and see a sea of candles held by quite a lot of wee hands. I even resurrected the song "Shine Jesus Shine" - works well with flame and under 7s.
I enjoyed the Christmas Day service very much too - highlights were introducing the toys that had been brought including the fart machine - and realising in dismay that that SP was linking each toy into some facet of the Christmas story (this scooter reminds us that M and J made a journey etc) - in my last church pastors on "look-at-the-toys" duty played with the toys and had a laugh! - so I was left with a mic and a small boy (whose dad will be reading this) introducing the congregation to his fart machine.