Lent - Cross (2) The Taize Cross

4-7 year olds, 8-11 year olds

On your marks

The season of Lent begins and ends with the cross. On Ash Wednesday there is the tradition of receiving the cross of ashes on the forehead to mark the beginning of a six-week period of prayer and reflection before Easter; and on Good Friday, we finally come to the cross of history on the hill outside Jerusalem where Jesus died.

The following outline would provide a link to further work during Lent on crosses that are found in the Barnabas book A-cross the World; for further development of this theme of the cross through Lent, visit the Ideas section of the website.

This idea could be used in a variety of ways:
as material for a Sunday group session with children for the first Sunday in Lent
as a resource for a special event with children and adults during the week
as part of a special Lenten display.

This outline also contains an idea for a Bible Focus using a parable that connects to the story and meaning of this particular cross.

Get set

You will need a copy of A-cross the World from Barnabas This book has information and creative ideas based on 40 different crosses from around the world. It also includes ideas for all-age worship, study sessions, games, outlines for special events, collective worship in school and also for R.E. lessons.

Go!

1. Lent 1 – the Taizé Cross

Key Theme: Welcoming

Use the ideas for games and icebreakers on the cross from Pages 107 –112 in A-cross the World.

2. The story of the Taizé Cross reminds us of the welcome that God gives to everyone as part of his new family because of the cross of Christ. The craft idea for this cross is on page 74 of A-cross the World.

3. The Bible parable for this is that of the Great Banquet (Luke 14:15 –24), in which Jesus tells of a great party thrown for guests, who make excuses about coming. However the master of the feast then opens it up to all who want to come. Heaven is being likened to a party, which is open to all.

4. I wonder what sort of menu the children would draw up for their ideal party? I wonder what sort of food would be needed on the table for it to be appropriate for people from all over the world and from all sorts of backgrounds? I wonder what surprises we might discover on the guest list in God's heavenly banquet?

5. Each child could make the crosses individually or perhaps there could be one large version made co-operatively by the children and which can then be brought into church for display, building up to the events of Holy Week and Easter morning.

6. For this session there are a number of possible ideas for prayers, both formal and creative, in A-cross the World – see pages113 –119 and pages 123 –128.