Sunday, October 16, 2011

Children's Sermon for Trick or Treating UNICEF

Some of you know that I have gone back to school. I am actually going back to school to get my Masters in Divinity and hopefully become a minister like Ian. In fact I am going to the same school that Ian went to, that Mardi goes to, and that our student minister, Peter, went to. I have a long way to go but at least I’ve started.

This semester I am taking a class called Congregational Imagination. Do you guys have a good imagination?

Let’s see – can you picture a purple bunny with blue polka dots and a lion’s tail?

You guys do have good imagination.

Well, the kind of imagining we do in this class is a little different. We imagine about churches that we might work in. Let’s say this church. Imagine I walk in and notice the peeling ceiling up there and so I imagine how the church might look nicer with a flat ceiling and so I figure out how to fix it.

OR we have great congregation imagineers right here. Our bells stopped working and so a couple people started talking about imagining that the bells would work again and they imagined not just that they would work but they would be able to play multiple melodious tunes. Their imagination became the carillon that now plays in our steeple.

The imagination used like this is a powerful tool. This is truly one of our gifts from God.

Well there is an organization that has used this same kind of imagination.

In 1946, just at the end of WWII several people got together to talk about the children of the world. They were very worried about the kids. They worried about them not eating properly, about not having clean water, about not being able to go to school.

These people got together and they imagined. They imagined a world where children weren’t hungry, where children weren’t sick, and could go to school. They then created UNICEF, United Nations Children’s Fund. And start to work to solve all these problems. They imagined a day when they wouldn’t have a job anymore because all the children would be healthy and educated.

Then about 1 year after UNICEF was founded a minister and his wife in PA were out for Halloween and they saw all the kid’s tick and treating. And they imagined . . . Imagine if we could use trick or treating for good. So they painted milk cartons to have children collect money for UNICEF. Now 60 years later, the imagination of these people has collected

$164 million dollars

1.6 billion people have safe water

2.3 billion doses of vaccine have been delivered

UNICEF built schools and buying supplies

Improved nutrition for countless children.

This Halloween, we are going to ask you to join in this imagination ideal and Trick or Treat for UNICEF. Vivian will be handing out your boxes and collecting them after Halloween.

Let’s take a minute to pray:

Dear God:

Thank you for blessing us with imagination. We are thrilled with the wonders that fill our minds. We are inspired by now others have used their imagination to change the world. We appreciate the opportunity to help bring other’s imaginations to life in tribute to You. And hope one day our imaginations will also help bring Your heaven to Earth. In Jesus name we pray. AMEN

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for this. It is so unusual to find a good children's sermon -- most use too much abstract thinking or analogies that kids don't really understand, or go the other way and sound as if they are talking down to the kids. Yours meets the kids where they are and uses their own experience of the world to get across the message.