Children's Advent Service

(16 Posts)
tablefor4 Fri 27-Sep-13 17:05:32

Hello

Hope you don't mind a Christmas thread (well, Advent technically), the Christmas topic doesn't really seem to focus on this!

The children's Christmas service at my church will be on the first Sunday of Advent this year. We've decided on a theme of "Prophets and Angels" as opposed to the usual Nativity because it is so early in Advent.

We'd like the children to learn a verse (poss 2) of a carol but ideally more Advent than Nativity focussed. The group is very young (mostly 3-6, couple of 8 yo) and small (probably max 8), although that's really large for us!

So, suggestions please for suitable carols/hymns, ideally for Advent which can be learnt by children who (pretty much) can't read (bonus points for any link, however casual, with Prophets and/or Angels)

I have

1. Go Tell it on the Mountain - yes Navity, but catchy chorus
2. Joy to the World - great tune, hopefully will hear it on telly/films etc and get a link to the broader celebration/society
3. We are marching in the light of God - not a carol, but upbeat, minimal words and may work if we have the Isaiah reading re "The people who are walking in darkness have seen a great light etc"

Any other suggestions?

crescentmoon Fri 27-Sep-13 17:07:48

can i ask a small question - what is the difference between Advent and Nativity?

MirandaWest Fri 27-Sep-13 17:12:31

I love Long Ago Prophets Knew. Not sure if it is entirely suitable for what you want but it is great IMO.

I also like Hills of the North Rejoice but think that is definitely outside your remit.

tablefor4 Fri 27-Sep-13 17:22:41

I think that (technically) "Christmas" runs from 25 Dec to 6 January which is Ephiphany. The four weeks leading up to Christmas Day is Advent and it focuses on anticipating Jesus' coming to earth and how he is fulfilling the Old Testament prophecies. If you like the theme is " looking forward to meeting you" rather than "Hooray! You're here" - which is Christmas.

Navity plays are lovely, we did one last year, and while no-one would really mind if we did it in the first week of Advent, it would be nice to try to have a nod to Advent itself.

Miranda - there are many magnificent Advent hymns, but they are all rather, well, Grand for want of a better word. And a bit beyond our reception/Year 1 children!

MirandaWest Fri 27-Sep-13 17:24:22

Probably smile

Will keep pondering

tablefor4 Fri 27-Sep-13 17:27:32

Thank you.

The Sunday school leader and I did reckon that they probably could learn O Come o Come Emmanuel if they put their backs into it, but probably won;t have the faintest meaning as to the words!

PandaG Fri 27-Sep-13 17:35:03

just had a quick google as was stumped, and came up with these, both sung to the tune of Twinkle Twinkle. Variations on a theme, but I reckon you could do them as 2 verses?

Advent is a time to wait, (hold up hand as to say “wait”)
Not quite time to celebrate. (Shake head and wag finger side to side)
Light the candles one by one, (put up four fingers one by one)
Till this advent time is done. (wave hands side to side palms down)
Day by day we work and play (put fist on top of fist back and forth)
To prepare for Christmas day. (cross arms over each other and give self a hug)

or

Advent is the time to wait
Not quite time to celebrate
light the candles one by one
til the advent time is done
christmas day will soon be here
time for joy and time for cheer

niminypiminy Sat 28-Sep-13 08:47:44

There's also a great song that's suitable for both advent and Christingle, 'show me the way to shine for Jesus' (words here to the tune of Show me the way to Amarillo. We did this last advent in my church and had lots of people walking down the isle Tony Kay stylee. The chorus is very memorable.

Crescentmoon Advent is the four weeks before Christmas, when we prepare ourselves for the coming of Christ into the world. It's one of the penitential seasons (in some Christian traditions they fast during Advent), and we focus, week by week, on those who heralded, or prepared the way for Jesus: the Patriarchs, the Prophets, John the Baptist and the Blessed Virgin Mary. It's a solemn and holy time, when the readings from the Bible are full of images of darkness and light, when we are preparing for the joy of Christmas and the coming of our saviour. For many Christians, Advent is one of their favourite times of the year -- it's like a church secret, because in the secular world Christmas seems to be happening all the way through those weeks and then to be over on Christmas Day. For us, we wait for Christmas through the darkness and mystery of Advent so that we can celebrate for two weeks from Christmas Day.

crescentmoon Sat 28-Sep-13 09:05:38

Thank you Op and niminy for explaining beautifully. Id only heard of advent calendars and 'lead up' to Xmas. Very interesting to learn its one of the 'penitential' seasons. but like my discovery earlier this year that the 40days of Lent is separate to the story of Easter iv recently realised how much background there is to all the festivals. if you dont mind me asking another question, who are the patriarchs and what's the difference between the patriarchs and the prophets?

The children at my church have sung this (Light the Advent Candle) usually while lighting the Advent Wreath.

I take a turn in leading the children's Liturgy and find Advent very difficult. We try to talk about Advent being a season of cleansing and preparation drawing parallels with the extra cleaning and cooking that families do in preparation for the visitors over the festive season. It is quite difficult with a target audience of 4-8 year olds who just want to talk about presents smile

niminypiminy Sat 28-Sep-13 09:53:23

The patriarchs are the fathers of Israel: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob (Israel). The prophets are those who opened the word of God to Israel: Moses, Elijah, Elishah. (And those whose prophetic writings form part of the Hebrew Bible - Isaiah, Jeremiah and so on.)

crescentmoon Sat 28-Sep-13 13:23:57

Thanks for the answer, il let you get on with planning Advent 'op'. Though you must be very organised to be thinking of it in September! we are celebrating the story of Abraham and the sacrifice next month (the Big Eid in the Muslim calendar) and I'm still considering how to organise it for our house!

tablefor4 Sat 28-Sep-13 16:29:16

Hi

I love the idea of "show me the way to shine for Jesus" Peter Kay style!

Thank you also Panda for your Twinkle Twinkle suggestion, that might be the way we go.

niminy I think that you're right it is a bit of a secret season, many people don't know what Advent really is. May be is all the more special for that, certainly one I really look forward to.

susiey Mon 30-Sep-13 14:07:28

I like ' the angels knew ' by nick and Becky drake you can listen to it on you tube

ColdFusion Tue 01-Oct-13 22:41:44

I like "Blessed is the asking who comes in the name of The Lord" for Advent.

It's from HTB.

ColdFusion Tue 01-Oct-13 22:41:59

*the king

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