the World During Advent
Advent wreath with pine branches or fir. Find a large ball or small
balloon that can fit in the middle. Paint it blue. When it is dry,
use bright colours to paint a simple map of the world on it.
You might hang
it over the table from a lamp or the ceiling. Or you might put it
in the middle of the wreath on a small plate so it does not roll.
If you prefer, make a poster or place a globe close to the table.
Fix the four
candles around the wreath. Set the wreath in the middle of the table.
Whenever your family gathers for dinner, light the candle. (Light
one candle the first week of Advent, two candles the second week,
and so on.)
God, you sent us your Son, Jesus,
to tell us about your love.
You invite us to work with him
for justice, reconciliation and peace
on our beautiful planet Earth.
We pray today especially forů
here one country or part of the world you want to pray for
and say why.)
bless this food we are about to share
and help us do our part
to make a better world for all.
week, you might read with your family the Gospel of Saint
Luke, chapter 1, verses 26 to 56. Then place Mary and Joseph in
the crib and together make up a prayer to them.
week, put the three kings on their way to the crib (but not
in it yet), and fix the star over the crib. Share your thoughts
about how God sends us people in our life to guide us to Jesus,
like he sent the star to the kings.
week, bring the kings closer to the crib and sing together
O Come, O Come, Emmanuel or another Advent hymn. Now put
the shepherds on their way to the crib.
with your family a special way of completing the crib on Christmas
Eve. For instance, you might gather around the crib. Read together
the Nativity story in Luke's Gospel, chapter 1, verses 1 to 21.
Share the roles: One person is the narrator, others are the shepherds
and the angels. You could sing Gloria in Excelsis Deo or
Glory to God in the Highest during the reading.
At the right
time, the youngest child brings the baby Jesus while another one
brings a large, lit Christmas candle. Others place the shepherds
and three kings around the crib. At the end of the reading, the
candle-holder lifts the candle and says, "Lord Jesus, we believe
you are the Light of the world!" All repeat the acclamation.
After a moment
of silent prayer, you might end the ritual with a favorite Christmas
carol and then wish one another a Merry Christmas.
From Growing Up a Friend of Jesus:
A Guide to Discipleship for Children
Darcy-Berube is an internationally recognized catechist
who has taught catechesis to children and formed catechists
in Canada, the United States, France and Belgium. She is
a graduate of the Sorbonne, Institut Catholique de Paris,
Lumen Vitae (Brussels), Université de Montreal and the University
of Ottawa. With her husband, Jean-Paul Berube, she began
publishing sacramental preparation programs for children
and their families in 1974. They have continued to write
and work in this area ever since, in both French and English.