Sunday Club for 19th April from St Peter’s – St Albans
We are grateful that St Peter’s are producing Sunday club material each week and that we are able to share it here.
Christ is Risen! He is risen indeed!
2nd Sunday of Easter
Did you have a happy Easter? You may have decorated some eggs and you may have made a rainbow egg for your window. Did you spot any in other people’s windows in your street? Have you noticed things coming to life when you have been outside for exercise?
On Easter Sunday we celebrated Jesus overcoming death and remembered the empty tomb and when Jesus appeared in the garden to Mary Magdalene. Mary was the first person to see him alive and, after Jesus had spoken to her, she ran to tell two of the disciples, Peter and John, the good news. They found it hard to believe.
Today we are going to think about what happened later and how the remaining eleven disciples, including Peter and John and Thomas, came to know for themselves that Jesus was alive.
You might remember that these were dangerous times for the friends and followers of Jesus. They risked getting arrested for being friends of Jesus so they were very frightened. What other feelings do you think that Jesus’s friends might have had in those early days? Well, it was also a very sad time for them because they felt that they had lost Jesus when he died on the cross. Apart from Mary, they did not yet understand that Jesus had risen from the dead and was alive.
Ten of the disciples came together in room and kept the door firmly locked. They were hiding and talking in quiet voices because they were scared of being found by the authorities. Although the room was locked, suddenly Jesus was there with them and he greeted them. He was not a ghost, he was really there, alive, and he put his hands on each one of them and spoke to them, telling them that he wanted them to carry on his work.
Some while after Jesus had left them Thomas arrived and was let into the room. The other ten told him that they had just seen Jesus. Thomas did not believe them even though he could see that something special must have happened. Thomas said: “I will not believe unless I can put my fingers into the nail holes in his hands and unless I can put my hand into the hole in his side made by the soldier’s spear”.
A week later, Jesus came again into the locked room when all eleven disciples, including Thomas, were there. This time, after Jesus had greeted them all, he turned to Thomas and said, “Put your fingers into the nail holes, put your hand into my side”. Thomas did so, and knew then that Jesus was real and alive. Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God”. Jesus told him, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe”.
(From John 20:19-29)
You can watch the video of the story here and there are some questions to think about at the end:
Thomas found it so difficult to understand and to believe that Jesus was really alive after having seen him die. In fact, all of the disciples had found it hard to believe but they did come to believe and they came to understand that Jesus was Lord and God.
Sometimes we might also find it hard to believe and trust in Jesus but he does not abandon us, even though we do not see him in front of us.
You might like to take the picture sheet of Jesus and Thomas and colour it in your own way or draw in the other disciples. Or, on another plain piece of paper you might want to draw a pair of hands to represent Jesus’s hands with the marks of the nails drawn on them: you could draw around your own hands. You could draw a picture of Thomas (or Thomas’s face when he recognised Jesus) on the same piece of paper. There is an example of this attached but you can be as creative as you like.
You might try this with actions:
- Hold up one hand and say: “let’s pretend this is God’s hand”
- Hold up your other hand and say: “and this is my hand”
- Put your two hands together and say: “when I put my hand in God’s hand, that is trust”
Now do the Bible verse with the action for ‘trust’ starting you off:
- Trust (two hands together like a handshake)
- In Jesus (point up)
- With all (arms out wide)
- Your heart (put your two hands over your heart)
[Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart]
A Prayer for today
Thank you for all your gifts to us
Thank you for your love
Help us to believe
Even in what we cannot see.
Thank you for Jesus!
In His name, Amen
(Ministry to Children, 2019)
Lord God, you are always with me.
You are with me in the day and in the night.
You are with me when I’m happy and when I’m sad.
You are with me when I am healthy and when I am ill.
You are with me with me when I am peaceful and when I am anxious.
Today I am feeling…… because…….
Help me to remember that you love me and are with me in everything today.
© The Archbishops’ council of the Church of England. March 2020