Sunday in the Godly Play classroom we learned about Jesus' birth and early life. After listening to the story, the children each chose an item from the classroom to help and tell the story. Then we went on to learn of Jesus, Mary, Joseph in Jerusalem and the "lost and found boy". At age 12, Jesus was found to be missing which led his parents to search for him, find him, and ask "Why did you do this?". Jesus replied, "Did you not know that I would be in my Father's house?" We concluded with a feast during which we shared graham crackers and what we were each thankful for: friends and family, health, no snow, and eating!
In Firelight, the children learned the story of Esther to coincide with the celebration of Purim this week. In Esther we hear the story of a common girl who becomes a queen and uses the gifts and privileges she has been given to stand up for what she knew to be right. We learned how Jewish people read their holy scriptures from scrolls. The story of Esther is a unique part of both the Christian Bible and the Jewish scriptures because it is the only book that does not mention God by name. Because of this, there is a Jewish tradition that the story can be handled differently than other pieces of holy text and many Jewish people have their own small scroll of the story of Esther, called a megillah. The class then created their own megillah of the Esther story.
The Middle School Youth shared stories of miraculous things that we have seen in our life, things that we couldn't explain. We then talked about the miracles that Jesus performed. We discussed which biblical miracles we believed and which ones were hardest to believe. We learned how miracles mean simply what they mean, but they also mean something more, often pointing toward a greater truth. We then had a competition between youth and teacher to see who could find the most miracles performed by Jesus in the Gospels!