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Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise.

Deuteronomy 6:6-7

News: March '10


Carol Miller telling scripture

Carol Miller tells the scripture story

A Lenten Journey: Scripture by Heart for Congregational Spiritual Formation

Grace United Methodist Church is a fruitful lab for much of the work of GoTell. In consultation with Senior Pastor, Dr. Sherry Gale, during Lent we developed a program encouraging and enabling members of the congregation to learn a verse of scripture by heart each week.

A "reflection" resource to enable members of the church to have a context for the verse and to pray with the story was written for each week and distributed with the worship bulletins. The first week we handed out simple folders; the reflection"inserts" were printed on 3-hole punched paper for easy addition. The verse for the week was one of the scriptures told in worship and explicated in the sermon. It was repeated and said back to the pastor. The following week it was reviewed.

The idea was to extend the value of learning scripture by heart from the group who tells the scripture on a weekly basis to the whole congregation. A central part of Jesus' training of his disciples was for them to learn his parables and teachings by heart. This is then an extension of Jesus' basic teaching strategy in an intial way to a congregation.

The written resources for each week may be downloaded here as PDF files:

Week 1: The Devil Tests Jesus (Luke 4:1-12)

Week 2: The Lament Over Jerusalem (Luke 13:31-35)

Week 3: Return to the Lord (Isaiah 55:-9)

Week 4: Lost Coin (Luke 15:8-9)

Week 5: Press On for the Prize (Philippians 3:4b-14)

Week 6: The Triumphal Entry (Luke 19:35-44)

puppet cups for telling the baptism story

"Cup Puppets" for telling the story of Jesus' baptism

Telling the Story with Children

It's fun to come up with creative ways to tell biblical stories with children. This cup puppet idea came from a book I picked up at the Children's Pastor's Conference: "Show Me a Story! Visual Aids for Telling Bible Stories" by Anita Reith Stohs (Concordia Publishing House). It worked great for Children's Moments during worship and also for preschool storytelling at the Y.

The Holy Spirit, like a dove, is attached to a straw so as to descend over Jesus' head. It also can go up and down really fast, and even twirl around while doing so as the preschoolers discovered with delight. Have the children color the pictures and paste them on the cups themselves.

Grace and Peace,