The Christmas Story

God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee to a young woman named Mary. Mary was engaged to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel told Mary she will give birth to a son, and will name him Jesus.

At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire. All returned to their own towns to register for this census. Mary and Joseph returned to Bethlehem in Judea. While they were there, Mary gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them at the inn.

That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, a multitude of angels of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. “Do not be afraid!” they said. “I bring you good news! A special baby has been born today in Bethlehem. You will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.” The shepherds said, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened.”

About that time some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking, “Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star as it rose, and we have come to worship him.” The star guided them to Bethlehem and stopped over the place where the child was. They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary. They opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.


Share the above Christmas Story with your children. As we do in Sunday Spirit have them retell the story through illustrations. Some illustration ideas:
The Angel Gabriel
Mary being visited by the Angel Gabriel
Mary and Joseph traveling to Bethlehem
Stable scene of Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus and animals
Shepherds visited by a multitude of angels
Wise men following the star
Wise men kneeling and presenting Jesus with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh

Advent Pictures – The Journey Towards Christmas

It so often happens that suddenly you are at Christmas and you are not sure how you got there.
And you arrive at Christmas more exhausted than renewed.
Adapting something I saw online, the idea is to take a picture that represents the word (see below) for each day.  You don’t have to be a great photographer. This project is hopefully more about the practice of paying attention and being intentional, than it is being the best photographer [though we encourage you to be creative!]  After you have taken a picture, email it to me ([email protected]) with or without an explanation or caption.  I will post them on our church’s Facebook page and Pinterest page.

December 1 – Watch

December 2  – Expectation

December 3 – Peace

December 4 – Time

December 5 – Vision

December 6 – Awake

December 7 – Ready

December 8 – Wisdom

December 9 – Angels

December 10 – Holy

December 11 – Steadfast/Steady

December 12 – Hope

December 13 – Fear Not

December 14 – Dream

December 15 – Rejoice

December 16 – Shepherds

December 17 – Ponder

December 18 – Journey

December 19 – Patient/Patience

December 20 – God With Us

December 21 – Wisemen/Wisewomen

December 22 – Sign

December 23 – Star

December 24 – Joy

December 25 – Light