The Pharisee and the Tax Collector

Watch on YouTube/read the Bible story online

Couldn’t find this week’s story as an online video, but this story of Noah is related:

Matthew 24: 36-44


This is a reading for the first Sunday in Advent. Rather than looking forward to the birth of a baby, and the joy we associate with Christmas, this reading asks us to look towards the time when Jesus’ work and sacrifice will be completed, when the Kingdom of God comes on Earth.

The key messages are that no-one knows when the Kingdom will come, but that we should be prepared.  This sounds unsettling, but if we live our lives in faith, then we have no need of knowing the precise timing, we have the promise of being part of God’s kingdom whenever it happens.

What does being prepared look like?  The stories immediately following this passage give us an idea. One is the Parable of the Talents – we should use our gifts for God’s benefit, and secondly, we are told that helping the poor, clothing the naked, visiting the prisoner are like helping God.  Being prepared is following the greatest commandments – to love God, and to love your neighbour as yourself.


Icebreaker/quickbuild  Make an object – we will tell you what you have to create and give you five minutes to work on it!
Story/home Make your way into church. We will read the first prayer (laminated sheets) and listen to the story.

Refreshments are served!
/timeYou have 20 minutes or so to build something in response to the story, either on your own, or team up with others.  Some ideas:
·       Build some people being surprised by a flood – maybe a lake with a door that will cause a flood when opened.
·       Find a way for someone to go missing from a field – maybe a hole to fall in
·       Build a mill
·       Build a house safe from thieves
If you don’t fancy building you can go back to the home village (/home) and read the story again in the church, or read some of the other stories in the library, or you might want to just explore the world, or work on your house.
WonderWhile you are creating, think about these questions with the adults on your table.
I Wonder: 
·         which part of this story you like the best?
·         what part is the most important?
·         where you are in this story or what part of the story is about you?
·         if there is any part of this story we can leave out and still have all the story we need?
There are many other things that can make us WONDER – what are you thinking about?
Final Prayer/home Back to the church for our final prayer (laminated sheet)
Dance/home We’ll put some music on and let your Minecraft characters dance about using jumping or emotes!
GamesFree play while the adults tidy up!!