Week Four: Advent Family Toolkit

Theme: Love

Love is always a risk, but it is a risk upon which the very heart of our life depends. To love is to touch the heart of God. To look into the eyes of another and recognize our common soul is to see the face of God. Even to feel the ache of a heart broken for love is to discover God’s grace. As Tasso wrote: “Any time that is not spent on love is wasted.”

—David E. Butler, from Seasons of Hope: Readings for the Liturgical Year

Scripture Text | Matthew 1:18-25

Three Wonderings

1

What different kinds of love are there?

2

Who are people that you find hard to love?

3

How does God want us to show love to people outside our family?

Reflection & Music Video

Join Claire Klein as she invites you to reflect, wonder, and connect through a creative telling of the scripture story and music.

Story from Matthew 1:18-25; Interpretation by Claire Klein; Costumes provided by Rosetown Playhouse; “Love is Love is Love is Love” by Abbie Betinis. From the Justice Choir Songbook.

Home Advent Candle Lighting Ritual

Use this document for guidance on daily rituals, and listen to Claire’s beautiful Light One Candle song. Audio guide to Wednesday’s Blue and White family spiritual practice.

Contemplative Practice for Parents

Lectio Divina

Lectio Divina, Latin for “divine reading,” is an experiential way of reading that engages the mind, heart, and imagination. This practice encourages you and your family to listen beneath the text rather than reading for comprehension or information – noticing what captures one’s attention and touches one’s soul.

Lectio Divina Week Four

Creative Project / Game

Loving Chain

Link people, places and things you love in an ever-growing paper chain!

Materials:

  • Scissors
  • Paper
  • Drawing materials
  • Glue or tape

How to: Write, draw or collage something you love on a long strip of paper. This could be a person, place, thing, quote, word, feeling…Something that makes you feel loved or loving!

  • Tape or glue strip into a circle
  • Tape or glue another strip around the first circle
  • Continue to add new links to the chain

Caring for the Common Good

Share Holiday Love

In the chaos of the Christmas season it can be easy to forget its true significance. Here are three ways to remind your children (and yourself) of what matters most by sharing love with those who need support during this difficult time.

  1. Send love to delivery drivers. Download this THANK YOU template, decorate and display for those bringing your necessities – and holiday gifts –  to your door. Consider offering individually-packaged water bottles, granola bars, or even a gift card as well.
  2. Send love to healthcare workers. Hennepin Healthcare Foundation encourages you to submit an online note of gratitude and share a photo or artwork to cheer frontline healthcare workers.
  3. Send love to isolated seniors. Share caring messages with both residents and staff of long term care facilities, either through stories or video. Want to spread more love? Download Doing Good Together’s FREE Kitchen Table Kindness Kit for more fun, simple ways for you and your children to share gratitude and compassion. Use the coupon code UCCKIND.

Children’s Books

© Minnesota Conference United Church of Christ | 2021