PRESENTING BIBLES TO CHILDREN
Here's a collection of posts on this topic. Feel free to add your ideas.
Special wrapping for the Bible Gift
from member Julie Burton
There is a neat presentation in the book "Celebrate Special Days" by Judy Gattis Smith. It involves wrapping the Bible in several layers of paper (gold, newsprint, etc) and there is symbolism for each layer of paper. We did this last year. I had the parents do the reading for each layer and present the Bible to their own child. It was very moving.
Smith, Judy Gattis. Celebrating Special Days. Colorado Springs: Meriwether Publishing, 1981. ISBN 0-916260-14-3.
Plan for Giving Age-Appropriate Bibles
from member Janet S-H
Several years ago, our Pastor suggested expanding our Bible presentations to several grades, allowing us to provide age-appropriate bibles to each group. We put nameplates in each book as well. The cost was prohibitive to our budget, so instead, we asked other members to become a child's "Bible Sponsor" throughout the years. (We are in discussion of what else these "sponsors" might do to connect with the child.)
On Bible Sunday in November, we now present books and Bibles to:
- PreSchool - Small Bible picture storybook give to any child in their FIRST year of PreSchool (which covers ages 3-5)
- 1st grade - "Beginner Bible" easy reading storybook
- 3rd grade - First full-length children's bible
- 6th grade - Junior High-level bible
- 9th grade - Teen Bible
- At High School graduation (June) - Adult Study Bible
In addition, any NEW child receives the most recent book they would have received for their age group. For instance, a new 2nd grader would receive the book given to 1st graders.
New Bible "products" come out quite often, and sometimes the new one's are better than what we have given -- so "WHICH BIBLE" we give will change.
We also look for case quantities and sales.
Giving Bibles the Kids Have Already Used
from member Barbara in Portland
I wrote a 3 session "Race Through the Bible Class" for 4th graders AND A PARENT or grandparent or older sibling. It involves reading and highlighting a verse from almost every book in the Bible (an idea I got from a great video called "Faith Stepping Stones"). We also had other "get to know your Bible" games and art activities.
When it came time for the Bible presentation ceremony, my emphasis was that we would not be giving the children a brand new, unused Bible, but that their Bibles had already been used and read!
Each child chose their favorite verse and read it during the presentation. I then used the baptism and confirmation rites from the New Century Hymnal (UCC) to create a dedication that involved the congregation recognizing the work of the children AND pledging to help them to use the Bible in their faith journey-sort; of half-way between baptism and confirmation.
I gave the students a rose corsage and a "Bible Bear," a small stuffed bear holding a bible, available from Oriental Trading. Cake and coffee followed. It was a great experience for all.