Monday, October 24, 2011

Rangoli Designs

A Rangoli is a colourful design made on the floor near the entrance to a house to welcome guests. At Diwali, Hindus draw bright Rangoli patterns to encourage the goddess Lakshmi to enter their homes.  This Sunday, children in the Treasure Hunters and Explorers classes began their study of Hinduism.  The children made these beautiful patterns as part of their lesson.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Salmon Pageant

 Last Sunday's intergenerational worship service enacted the lifecycle of the salmon and drew a connection between that cycle of life and our own.  A big thank you to all of those who worked on the pageant and to everyone who shared personal reflections.

Following the pageant, a group of us traveled to Soos Creek watch the salmon who had reached their journey's end, and the place where new lives will soon begin.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Celebrating Me and My World: Our Hands

The Discovery class (preschool and kindergarten at 9:30) explores what it means to be a Unitarian Universalist by celebrating what makes each of us wonderful and then extending outward to see the world is a wonderful place as well. Today the children explored their hands. From the curriculum, Celebrating Me and My World: "As Unitarian Universalists, we believe that we should keep on learning and growing. Young children learn about the world by manipulating things with their hands--to explore, to discover, to play, and to make beautiful things." The children played games using their hands, talked about some of the things we can do with our hands, and made paintings of their hands. Unitarian Universalists believe that we should always keep on learning about our world and ourselves. We use our hands to help us learn. What are some things your hands have helped you to learn?

Monday, October 3, 2011

Lighthouse Chapel Teams

Lighthouse Chapel teams are a chance for children and youth to work together on a project benefiting our church or community. On each chapel Sunday, children and youth can choose from one of three teams.

Open Minds: Creates things for our classroom and chapel space, helps with planning chapel worship, or makes props to be used in intergenerational worship services.
Today our Open Minds team created salmon puppets for the "salmon pagent" worship service on October 16.

Loving Hearts: Reaches out to people in our church community by making cards or small gifts of support or celebration. Today our Loving Hearts team made "thinking of you" cards to be used by the Caring Team.

Helping Hands: Works for social justice through service projects and raising awareness about needs in our community or around the world. Today our Helping Hands team made posters advertising the Trick or Treat for Unicef collection on October 30.

Forgiveness Sunday

Today the children and youth joined the adults in the sanctuary for our annual forgiveness ritual. Afterwards, the children at 9:30 met together to do some forgiveness-themed crafts.

The forgiveness tokens can be given to someone to help in making an apology, or as a token of forgiveness, or as a reminder to carry around of the importance of making amends with others.

This honey pot was inspired by the Jewish tradition of dipping apples in honey to celebrate the new year, Rosh Hashanah. Apples and honey are a traditional treat on Rosh Hashanah, symbolizing the sweetness of a new year.

Rosh Hashanah, the celebration of the new year, is followed ten days later by Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. During these ten days, the Days of Awe, Jewish people work to set things right in their relationships with others and with God.

Here are some possible uses for this honey pot your child has made. Maybe you will think of others:

  1. At dinner time (or another time when you are together as a family) pass the pot around. Have each person take an apple and share a wish with everyone for the coming year. Encourage wishes for the good of the family as a whole.

  1. You and your child could use the apples to talk about things you are sorry for or want to forgive someone for. Each apple represents a member of your family. Take turns considering each apple and the person it represents. Is there anything you need to do to set things right with that person? (Is there something you’d like to apologize for, or something you’d like to forgive them for?)

The most important custom of the Days of Awe is to apologize to others for things we have done to offend them in the past year. The desire to have a fresh start and to repair relationships is universal. Like our Jewish friends, we Unitarian Universalists believe in forgiving others, and in trying to right the wrongs we have done.