All-age worship

By Ellen Torres,2014-09-26 07:33
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All-age worshipAll-

All-age worship

    Back to church Sunday: handle with care


    This outline is for all-age worship which could be Eucharistic or not according to local

    thcustom. It is based on the lectionary for Sunday 27 September 2009, which is the

    day designated for back to church Sunday.

    Readings (As lectionary)

    Esther 7: 1- 10, 9:20-22 dare to speak

    James 5: 13- end: ―dare to pray‖

    Mark 9: 38-end: ―dare to follow‖

You will need:

    An object special to speaker that involves a story of risk/choice . Three dark coloured bags with baked beans [inside a plastic bag, not in tin], lump of rock, and crumpled up paper with teasel head and ?1 inside; Three cards [OHPs/Powerpoint] with words ‗say something‘; ‗do something‘; ‗ask something‘

    Night light candles


    This section could be used as an We gather

    introduction to either Eucharistic or non-Opening hymn Eucharistic worship. It replaces ‗prayer of Informal welcome preparation‘.

    Making ready

     This is to be said rhythmically, perhaps accompanied by a drum beat

Voice[s]: Holy, Holy, Holy

    All: Holy is the Lord [repeat at least 3 times]

    Voice: We will praise his name

    All: Holy is the Lord [repeat at least 3 times]

    All: Amen!

We say sorry

    Making connections: Sometimes we forget that God is a holy God. Sometimes we forget to make good choices in our lives. Sometimes we are afraid to do what is right. As you listen to the words and do the actions, say sorry to God for all

    that is wrong in our lives and our world.

    [*Don‘t forget to leave a pause before saying ‗Lord have mercy‘]

[Invite people to place hand over lips]

    Voice: Sometimes we are scared to speak out. Sometimes we say wrong things.* Lord have mercy

    All: Lord have mercy

[Invite people to move feet silently]

    Voice: Sometimes we are scared to take action. Sometimes we do wrong things. * Lord have mercy

    All: Lord have mercy

[Invite people to hold hands out, palms upwards[

    Voice: Sometimes we are scared to help. Sometimes we ignore other people. * Lord have mercy

    All: Lord have mercy

[Invite people to place hand to forehead]

    Voice: Sometimes we are scared to believe. Sometimes we believe wrong things.* Lord have mercy

    All: Lord have mercy.


    May the Father of all mercies

    cleanse us from our sins,

    and restore us in his image

    to the praise and glory of his name,

    through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Hymn or if Eucharist Gloria - suggest using ‘Peruvian Gloria” or other hymn-type


Collect of the day

    Lord of creation,

    whose glory is around and within us:

    open our eyes to your wonders,

    that we may serve you with reverence

    and know your peace at our lives‘ end,

    through Jesus Christ our Lord.

We listen Please sit

    Readings; [if possible use Contemporary English Version unless stated] Esther the set reading is a small part of a big story. If you want to focus on this story there are some great dramatic versions around. Alternatively see end

for a brief drama with a bit of back story.

    James: Read from ‗Message Bible‘, on a scroll that is unfurled. Pull up chair and sit down as if reading a letter to some friends.

    Gospel: See script at end for suggestion using two voices and movement.


    Hold out your special item. Explain why its special and the risks you took to get it. It might be something like a special shell off a beach, and you had to climb rocks etc. to reach it or something like a photo of your partner and the risks/choices you made to meet and keep him/her!

    Ask people how they feel when they are faced with the unknown and uncertain. It‘s the theme of lots of films and stories – Indiana Jones, Harry Potter; Lion,

    Witch and Wardrobe [as when Lucy saw Aslan and wanted them to go a different path] Ask for suggestions[ or if you use technology show a clip/still] Then get three volunteers to hold up three bags.

    Invite people to come and feel them and take a risk about putting in their hand. Can only make one choice!!

    After the game, recap how we feel when we take risks. It can be scary. Some people might have felt quite anxious choosing to come to church today. All our bible stories were about taking risks Esther chose to speak out on

    behalf of her people even though the king might put her to death! In the letter of James we are encouraged to ask people to pray for us when we are ill or to

    tell them when we have done something wrong even though we are afraid we

    will look stupid! And Jesus invites us to follow him, making a choice to live the right way even though it won‘t be easy.

    Hold up three cards: say something, ask something, do something.. As we choose to follow Jesus we have to make choices and take risks. Today God might be asking you to speak out on behalf of other people like Esther, or it might be that you need to ask for help or prayer, or you might want to choose to keep following Jesus, even though its hard.

    Whatever choice we make, God is with us, giving us the courage.

We declare our faith

    Making connections We‘ve been thinking about speaking out the truth, so lets declare

    our faith in these words [use appropriate form or

    Let us declare our faith in God.

    We believe in God the Father,

    from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named.

    We believe in God the Son,

    who lives in our hearts through faith, and fills us with his love.

    We believe in God the Holy Spirit,

who strengthens us with power from on high.

    We believe in one God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

We respond Intercession activity Either that allows everyone to

    Invite everyone to walk to the font and light a night-light bring their prayers to

    candle. Explain that the candle is a sign of their prayer and God: at the end gather

    could be for themselves or for someone else. prayers together. Play

    music. It doesn‘t have Play music as this happens [e.g Shine all your light by Beth

    to be too solemn! Neilsen Chapman/ I will try to fix you by Coldplay]

Gathering prayer

    Minister: Loving God, who is always with us, we pray for your wisdom and

    understanding in every situation that we find difficult in our world,

    in our community and in our own lives. Help us to have the courage

    to speak, to ask and to act so that we can help to bring peace and

    healing in your world. In your mercy

    All: Hear our prayer


    Write prayers in four sections to be accompanied by movement:

    ; Invite people to look down at the ground, remind them of the church, the

    faithfulness of God etc. and pray for the church and its leadership.

    ; Invite people to look outwards towards the walls and to think about the

    world that lies beyond family, community and pray for local needs.

    ; Invite people to look up to the roof and then think of the immensity of

    the world, in its loveliness and in its difficulties and pray for world


    ; Invite people to place hands on knees and look at them pray for our own

    needs as we follow Jesus.

     If not a Eucharist, end the prayers with the Lord‘s Prayer

The Peace

    Minister: God makes peace within us let us claim it.

     God makes peace between uslet us share it.

     The peace of the Lord be with you.

    All: And also with you.

If this is a Eucharist continue with the service as usual.

    Recommend Prayer D [This is our story, this is our song] for all-age congregation.

    We go out into the world (said by Minister or others)



    May God‘s joy be in our hearts [place hand on heart] May God‘s peace be in our world [sweep hand out in front] May God‘s love be known between us [hold hands or touch palms] and the blessing of God etc…


The Dismissal

    Minister: Go in the light and peace of Christ. All: Thanks be to God.


Esther at the banquet

You will need:

    Three people

    Three cards saying ―Flashback‖ ―live action‖ ―the end‖

    A posh bag containing make-up bag, perfume, pashmina, jewellery

[Someone walks across front holding up card saying ‗flashback‘]

Story teller holds up posh handbag.

    Assistant pulls out make up bag, perfume and beautiful pashmina Story teller Esther had been chosen to be the wife of the king. She was the most beautiful wife of all the wives he had. But Esther had a secret. Assistant: puts finger to lips and looks round at everyone Story teller she belonged to a special group of people: the Jews. and…

    Assistant: drum roll noise

    Story teller their enemy, Haman, had persuaded the King to put them all to death!!

    Assistant: Sharp intake of breath.

    Story teller Esther‘s uncle, Mordecai, told her she was in a unique place to help. She was so beautiful the king had promised to grant her anything she asked for. Assistant puts hand in bag and pulls out jewellery, preens hair, etc.. Story-teller- so she invites the King and Haman

    Assistant boo! Boo!

    Story-teller - to not just one banquet, but two!

[person walks across with sign saying ‗Live Action‘]

    Story-teller: We are at the second banquet. The king says to Esther: King [assistant with crown on head]: Well Esther, what do you want from me? Ask anything from me.

    Story-teller and Esther summoned up all her courage, all her bravery and said.. [does drum roll]

    Esther [assistant with pashmina round shoulders]: Please save my life and the life of all my family and all my people. For we have been sold to be killed! Story-teller and the king looked really shocked

    King [assistant with crown on]: who has thought up such a terrible plot? Story-teller and Esther raised her hand.. and said

    Esther [assistant with pashmina] Haman

    Story-teller boo! boo [gets congregation to join in].

    Story-teller so Haman was taken out and hanged that very day. And it was

    decided that for ever and ever and ever the story of Esther would be remembered.

    Assistant: Because sorrow had turned into joy, tears into laughter. Hurray!!

{person walks across front with sign saying ―the end‖.]


The Gospel according to Mark

Voice from Lectern:

    Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Mark.

    One of Jesus disciples asked him a question:

    ‖Jesus we saw someone using your name to cast out a demon. So we stopped him because he isn‘t in our group.‖

    Then Jesus began to talk. The disciples began to listen.

    We are his disciples today. So let‘s listen to what Jesus said..

Reader starts walking down the nave:

    "No. No. No. Don‘t stop them. No-one can use my name to do something good and

    powerful, and then in the next minute speak bad of me. No. If people are not against us, they are on our side. Anyone who simply gives you a cup of water in my name is on our side.‖

    Reader moves up into pulpit

    ―On the other hand, if you give one of these little ones who believe in me – young

    in years or young in faith any reason to stop believing in me by your words or

    your actions you‘ll soon wish you hadn‘t. You would be better off being dropped into a lake with a millstone round your neck.!‖

    Come down from pulpit, lean on lectern

    ―If your hand or foot gets in God‘s way, chop it off and throw it away! You‘d be better off lame and alive than the proud owner of two feet or hands that cause you trouble. Same with your eye - if it distracts you from God, throw it away. Everyone will be tested by fire eventually but you, you are like salt. You are to

    bring flavour to the world and be at peace with each other.‖

Voice from lectern

    This is the Gospel of the Lord

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