Saul to Paul: craft and activity ideas

All-age
Here is a selection of craft and activity ideas that you could use to explore the story of Saul's conversion in Acts 9 in a group session or for a Messy Church on this theme.

On your marks:

When light from God shone into Saul's life, it knocked him for six. It is hard to imagine a greater turnaround than the conversion of Saul. When he met Jesus on the road to Damascus, he was on his way to arrest Christians, so convinced was he that they had got everything wrong. Three days later, he was now certain that Jesus was the Son of God and he was prepared to stand up and tell his fellow Jews that they had got it all wrong.

Get set:

You can find the story in Acts 9:1-31. There is a retelling of this story in The Barnabas Children’s Bible (stories 326-328). For a way to explore the story, see Saul to Paul.

This outline offers a wide selection of craft and activity ideas to use with the story. See each individual activity for materials needed.

Go!

Here are some possible areas to focus on:

1. Light

  • Make stained glass windows: either use acetate sheets with a pre-printed picture on to which tissue paper is stuck or colour in a picture on paper and then brush the back with a thin coating of cooking oil - when dry the paper becomes translucent.
  • Make a simple light circuit with batteries.
  • Take some flash photos of individuals/groups holding reflective objects and print the photos to see the effect of the flash. The flash will be like the blinding light that Saul experienced.
  • Make decorative sun glasses.

2. Footsteps

  • Get people to draw around their own feet onto coloured paper, write their name on it and stick it on a lining paper 'road'. Saul became Paul travelling with the good news of Jesus.
  • Create a 'follow the feet' maze on the floor or a dance mat.

3. Blindness

  • Play a version of pin the tail on the donkey but call it 'Finding Ananias' home' using a street map of Damascus.
  • Make eye patches.
  • Using I-pods with sounds to identify.
  • Guide a friend around obstacles when blindfolded.

4. Scrolls

  • Make scrolls from small roles of paper and craft sticks.(Saul was a devout Pharisee.)
  • Decorate a version of the 'Hear O Israel' on paper.
  • Make quills with feathers. (Paul went on to write many letters to the new churches.)
  • Create an arrest warrant letter with a seal at the end.

5. Hate into love

  • Make two-sided masks with faces that are angry or happy depending on which way you turn them.
  • Turn the word 'hate' into 'love' changing a letter at a time.

6. Journeys

  • Make paper boats.
  • Add stickers/arrows to a map of the journeys of St Paul.
  • Make signposts from cardboard for the places St Paul went.

7. Damascus

  • Build the walls of Damascus from building blocks or junk.
  • Draw a picture of something from the story using straight lines only (link to the street called 'Straight').
  • Make a collage of the mountainous journey to Damascus.

8. Escape

  • Weave a small paper basket.
  • Make a strong rope from lots of little pieces of string.
  • Organise a 'lift a weight' challenge.

9. Jesus

  • An activity linked to the 'Light of the world' picture by Holman Hunt such as making paper lanterns.
  • Make a paracord Orthodox cross from Syria using string and beads (see Internet for instructions).

10. Tents

  • Organise an 'erect a small tent' challenge. (Saul was a tent maker.)
  • Make a model tent.
  • Play a parachute game. (Keep Paul safe... get Paul out.)

11. Friends

  • Make Paul's companions from newspaper (or maybe a horse or carriage).

12. Prayer reflection ideas

  • Light a candle.
  • Prayers for those working with blind people.
  • Small labyrinth to walk around.
  • Prayers on sail shapes about travels.
  • Prayer tent.
  • Prayers for Syria - link Damascus.