Inviting children to pass the peace

Since hearing Diana Butler Bass speak at CEF last October, I have been pondering her four-part “Agenda for Christian Formation.” Inspired by her book, Grounded, she suggests where and how people are searching for God:

  • Spiritual Peace and Well Being
  • Sense of Awe and Wonder about the Universe
  • Deep Sense of Gratitude
  • Engaging Meaning and Purpose of Life

IMG_20170724_092536Yesterday during worship, I used a wonderful picture book, What Does Peace Feel Like?, as a guided meditation for the entire congregation to remember a time they felt a sense of peace. Since our children’s time is right before passing of the peace, it was a perfect, experiential lead-in to that part of worship. Pull this book out anytime you find yourself searching for a moment of peace in a chaotic world.

Using this book during worship:

Ask everyone to close their eyes and imagine a time they felt peace:

What do you see? Where are you?

What sounds do you hear?

What do you smell?

How do you feel?

Is there a taste that comes to mind when you remember your peaceful place?

After everyone opened their eyes, I read V. Radunsky’s book, What Does Peace Feel Like? Then we shared our words for what peace looks, smells, sounds, and even tastes like. For some, peace tastes like candy and sounds like lapping waves. For me, peace sounds like the rushing of the French Broad River where I camped last week for the Wild Goose Festival. It sounds like our youth singing and song writing together at last night’s youth group. Peace sounds like the excited voices of our children as they find radishes and carrots in the church garden and ask me how old the Bible is during faith formation. Next week, it will sound (and smell) like the crackle of a campfire in the Canadian boundary waters as we take the 20th NUMC canoe trip. Peace looks like a growing pile of school supplies being collected for children in foster care.

At the end of our meditation, we were invited to share this peace with others during passing of the peace. May the peace of Christ be with you this week and always. Let us spread peace to all those we meet this week.

3 thoughts

  1. In our congregation, the children lead the passing of the peace. It follows immediately after the time intentionally for children in our worship service. We saw a prayer together and then the kids all stand up, face the congregation and say, “The peace of Christ be with you.”

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