6 January 2024
Bible readings for today
Liturgical colour: WHITE
Jesus, light of the world,
let your bright star stand over the place
where the poor have to live;
lead our sages to wisdom
and our rulers to reverence.
Hear this prayer for your love’s sake.
E Īhu, mārama o te ao,
meinga kia tīaho tōu whetū mārama ki runga iho i te wāhi
e noho ai te rawakore;
arahina ō mātou tohunga ki te whakaaro nui,
ō mātou rangatira ki te whakaaro pai.
Whakarongo ki tēnei īnoi i runga i tōu aroha.
Over the summer
You may have fewer services or regulars over the summer months, but its always a great idea to anticipate that children will be present in your Sunday gatherings. You may have some new faces come along with grandparents, visitors or with friends. Think about your space, and how you can help families feel welcome in your time of worship.
School Holiday Packs (Salvation Army)
Updated wall planner to come!
The Magi travel to meet Jesus (Matthew 2:1-12 )
Today's bible reading talks about how the magi travelled to meet Jesus.
What is Epiphany?
We often think of Epiphany as just being one day/Sunday, but in fact it is a season in our liturgical calendar. For three weeks we celebrate how Epiphany is all about expanding God's Kingdom beyond his people Israel. The word Epiphany describes the 12th day of Christmas, which falls on January 6th and marks the official end to the festive season for many Christians.
We also celebrate Jesus' baptism on this day (see our other Bible Explore resources for today) and Epiphany also marks the visit to the baby Jesus by the Magi, (the three Kings, or Wise Men). The word 'Epiphany' comes from Greek and means 'manifestation'. It celebrates 'the revelation of God in his Son as human in Jesus Christ'.
Find out more facts about Epiphany here
A lot of families will be on holiday this weekend, and the story this week is a great one for an intergenerational service. We'd encourage you to include your children into the wider church family, and make sure the worship and teaching is for all ages. If you would like to provide some activities to back up the story for today, you could consider including:
A simple chalk blessing to pray over the homes and households for the year ahead.
For background info about the blessing:
Today is what we call Epiphany Sunday! Which means that is the Sunday we remember teh wisemen coming to visit the baby Jesus. Let’s have a quick quiz. (encourage everyone to sit down). Jump up if you think you know the answer....
Unpacking the readings
The Church of Scotland have some good lectionary reading content on their website, which is helpful for those preaching this Sunday, or looking for background information on the scriptures.
You can find their information here
Source: Sun Hats and Wellie Boots
Preschool Playdough Mat
Flame Creative have put together a printable Playdough mat, so that the youngest of our children can enjoy Epiphany too.
You can find it on their website!
Play dough recipe
What you need
Game - Kings Keys
The king’s keys - sit in a circle. 1 child sits in the middle on a chair with a bunch of keys underneath, they are blindfolded. They have to listen hard and point if they hear anyone coming to steal the keys, 3 goes. If they point correctly, the stealer sits on the chair. A leader choses different children to try to get the keys...
Clay crowns craft activity
Give each child a square of greaseproof paper with their name on and a lump of salt dough to make into a crown. They can push sequins and beads into them to make them look like beautiful crowns. Push a skewer through the top so they can be hung up (make 2 holes if the crowns are too big). Put them into cook on a low heat and give out before they leave (during morning tea).
Suggest the older children write Jesus or Jesus is my King on the back, using a knife, or tiny dots make with a fork.