Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Second Sunday of Advent

Second Sunday of Advent: Faith
“So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in a manger.”
Luke 2:16

Call to Worship
Leader: Let’s get ready!
Children: Let’s get ready!
Leader: Let’s get ready for Baby Jesus!
Children: Let’s get ready for Baby Jesus!
Leader: Only three more weeks until his birthday!
Children: Only three more weeks until his birthday!
Leader: Let’s light the Advent wreath!
(There will be a wreath on the table for Advent.)

Joys and Concerns
Have the children share a few joys and concerns they have and follow with a prayer thanking God for our joys and asking God to be with us in our concerns.

Ask: Today is the Second Sunday in Advent. The word Advent means the arrival of something. Do you know who we are waiting for to arrive? (Jesus)Yes! Advent is the time we use to get ready for the birth of Jesus.

Today is the day we celebrate Saint Nicholas. Does anyone know who St. Nick is?

The origin of Santa Claus begins in the 4th century with Saint Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, an area in present day Turkey. By all accounts St. Nicholas was a generous man, particularly devoted to children. After his death around 340 A.D. he was buried in Myra, but in 1087 Italian sailors purportedly stole his remains and removed them to Bari, Italy, greatly increasing St. Nicholas' popularity throughout Europe.
His kindness and reputation for generosity gave rise to claims he that he could perform miracles and devotion to him increased. St. Nicholas became the patron saint of Russia, where he was known by his red cape, flowing white beard, and bishop's miter.
In Greece, he is the patron saint of sailors, in France he was the patron of lawyers, and in Belgium the patron of children and travelers. Thousands of churches across Europe were dedicated to him and sometime around the 12th century an official church holiday was created in his honor. The Feast of St. Nicholas was celebrated December 6 and the day was marked by gift-giving and charity.
Like Saint Nicholas, we are going to draw a picture about what presents we would like to give. If you could give any gift to the people of the world, what would that gift be? Draw a picture of your gift and write a sentence to explain what your gift is and why you chose it.

Say: God of our world, thank you for Advent! Amen.

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