These articles come from the indicated issues of “On The Move,” a publication of “new learning possibilities for churches”, at one time published by The Joint Board of Christian Education of Australia and New Zealand.
Although some ideas and liturgies may appear somewhat “dated” in style, concept, imagery or language, they may nevertheless offer a spring-board for new ideas among people who find themselves leading worship, perhaps in a new context, and with some trepidation.
Reproduced with permission. May be reprinted for use in local congregations only.
A Handful of PENTECOST IDEAS
“ON THE MOVE” – Issue 52 page 3
During the reading of the Pentecost happening in Acts 2 a group of all ages mimed the drama whilst a group of liturgical dancers carrying large red scarves floated the scarves as symbols of the pentecostal flames over the group, and then moved to ripple the scarf flames over the congregation. The communion table was covered with an incredible variety of candles of all colours and sizes, symbolising the diversity of the gifts and personalities in the pentecostal experience.
“ON THE MOVE” – Issue 55 page 29
PENTECOST WORKSHOP AND PARTY
An all-age workshop and party marked Pentecost eve for Uniting Church people in Wangaratta, Victoria. Everyone was invited to come at 10.00 am. on the Saturday morning, bringing their lunch and their creative enthusiasm.
All kinds of Pentecost-related activities were provided so that everyone could choose how they would fill their day. There were Bible studies in both the morning and the afternoon, and the afternoon also offered a chance to hear about the charismatic movement from a member of another denomination.
Creative activities included:
• Pentecost music (learning songs for use in worship the next day);
• a Pentecost dance (choreographing movements to ‘This is the day the Spirit came’)
• kite-making and kite-flying;
• preparing Pentecost food (icing biscuits with symbols of Pentecost);
• Pentecost T-shirts (people brought their own plain T-shirts and decorated them with Pentecost symbols by means of ‘puff paint’)
• Pentecost drama (‘Peter, this is your life’ was made up and rehearsed for presentation next day).
• Toward the end of the afternoon, as workshop activities were wound up, participants joined in three important pieces of preparation: tables were laid and decorated for the party; decisions were made about how the fruits of the workshop could be used in worship the next day; and outside, a huge bonfire was kindled.
After everyone had enjoyed the Pente cost goodies in the hail, they all went outside to toast marshmallows around the bonfire and to sing songs until it was time to go home. Needless to say, Sunday’s worship was memorable.
“ON THE MOVE” – Issue 70 page 24
Part of an article “WORSHIP FOR THE EASTER SEASON by Denis Towner
At Pentecost we heard the central reading from Acts 2 in a whole new way which helped us feel that we were actually there when the Holy Spirit was poured out on the disciples!
The reader was an 8-year-old girl who had a very clear voice and read well. The text was from Birth, death and resurrection by Judy Gattis Smith, which she read from the aisle, with a good microphone to carry her voice. We were asked prior to the reading to select from the pew Bibles our favourite verse, and when the passage related the disciples “speaking in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance” we were all to read our verse at the same time. They weren’t different languages, but it had the same effect!
Some children with percussion instruments were stationed around the nave of the church. At the reference to the powerful wind from heaven, they rattled their shakers. Soft music played from a tape recorder heightened the effect.
Two other children lit candles at the front of the church at the reference to “tongues of fire” being distributed and resting on the heads of the disciples. Another child banged a drum. All in all it brought the reality of that experience to life in a way we will never forget!
Denis Towner is Director of The Elm Centre (Education for Lay Ministry) in Sydney.
“ON THE MOVE” – Issue 67 page 30
Pentecost celebration with people of all ages at Darling Road Uniting Church (East Malvern, Victoria) included making crosses with added symbols that helped us learn about and remember the harvest of the Spirit in our lives.We read the list of fruits of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23 (Good News Bible), talked about examples of each in Jesus’ life, and asked God to produce them in us too.
each symbol was introduced by being added to an outline cross on the blackboard, we asked why it was a good symbol for the Spirit working in us. The complete pattern on the blackboard became the guide
for the smaller crosses we made to hang on the wall or take home
Joy: some thought of sparklers, some of Christmas…
The dove of peace may take a different form for people of other denominations. For us in the Uniting Church it was important to use the form in which it appears in our crest.
“It looks like a pyramid.” Patience builds endurance.
At the centre: kindness.
Is goodness old-fashioned?
Faithfulness is keeping your promise. “As sure as eggs is eggs.”
Myself: represented by the smallest symbol of all.
A perfect circle has a lot of associations that are metaphors for self-control.