It’s just two weeks after Christmas, we are sitting in the freezing car on the way to our dog walk when, out of the blue, my son asks me when he can have another Advent Calendar. “In a year” felt like it wasn’t going to cut it, so I said “Easter”, and we decided we would call it an Easter Calendar (inspired, I know, but to be fair he is only four and I was distracted at the thought of chocolate). It made me think that Lent is a lot like Advent. It’s a time of preparation, of anticipation and the narrative builds to one day of great celebration. This has inspired me to look at the six Sundays in Lent that lead up to Easter and bring together a song, an activity and a Bible passage for each one. This will guide children on a journey of preparation as we move towards The Big Day.6th March (1st Sunday of Lent)
This week we have had Pancake Day. Pancake Day marks the start of Lent, which is a time of preparation. We prepare our hearts and minds to celebrate Easter without just skipping forward to the resurrection. Jesus himself had a time of preparation when the Holy Spirit led him into the desert, but nothing could distract or deter him from fulfilling his mission of love and sacrifice for us.
Song: We’re Making pancakes
Activity: Decorating Pancakes! Grab some packets of scotch pancakes, bananas, berries and chocolate sauce and have a pancake decorating bonanza! Watch our pancake decorating video for some ideas.
Bible passage: Luke 4:1-13
13th March (2nd Sunday of Lent)
This Sunday we look at the day that Jesus declared his mission. He knew that he was fulfilling a promise that God had made a long time ago; that he would be the one to start bringing healing and wholeness to everything and everyone. We can look at our lives and our future with hope because of Jesus.
Song: One Life
Activity: God Binoculars. Have a go at these God Binoculars! You can simplify this craft for younger children or expand it for the older ones with the amount of decoration you choose to do.
Bible Passage: Luke 4:16-21
20th March (3rd Sunday of Lent)
This Sunday we remember that absolutely everything was created through Jesus. Everywhere around us there is wonder and beauty! We can marvel at all he has made and thank him for it all.
Song: Everywhere Around Me
Activity: Try this simple Ladybird Bookmark. Don’t feel you have to just stick to ladybirds; spiders, flowers, whales or anything the children like!
Bible Passage: Colossians 1:15-17
27th March (4th Sunday of Lent)
This Sunday is Mother’s Day in the UK. Today we celebrate love - the love of our families and the the ultimate love that God has for us. God is love, and we love others because he loved us first!
Song: Thank You God
Activity: These salt-dough hearts can be used to make simple decorations that the children can then give to their mother’s or other family members. If you have access to a microwave you can dry these out in around three minutes by heating them repeatedly for 10 seconds, checking them and turning them over each time.
Bible Passage: 1 John 4:7-10
3rd April (5th Sunday of Lent)
This week we look at the story of when Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, and promised that everyone who believes in him will never die. We thank him that this promise is for us too.
Song: Sing Out an Easter Song
Activity: The activity and song are in preparation for Easter Sunday and will help create a special moment of celebration. The children can learn the song and make the flags ready to sing and wave in two weeks’ time!
Bible Passage: 1 John 11:20-27, then 38-44.
10th April (6th Sunday of Lent)
It is Palm Sunday this week, when we remember the day that the people of Jerusalem used palm branches to welcome Jesus into the city. It’s a day to celebrate and welcome Jesus into our hearts and lives again.
Song: Raise Your Banner
Activity: This palm-inspired banner can be made by the children to decorate the church, or they can make them to take home.
Bible Passage: John 12:12-15