Resources – Advent, Christmas, Epiphany

Welcome to our page just for Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany resources!

We are pleased to offer resources for worship, Christian education/faith formation, and other ministries. These works have been carefully designed and developed by members of Sacred Stones Ministries as part of our mission to equip, empower, and encourage Christian communities to connect more deeply with God, with each other, and with the world.

More resources will be added as they are completed. Sign up for our email list to be notified when we post new material to our website. Please note that we cannot issue refunds. Thank you for your support!

Faith Formation Resources

Worship Resources

 

Faith Formation

 Advent Children’s Curriculum Now Available!

Trip of a Lifetime:

A Journey through Advent to Epiphany

by Revs. Denise Bender and Nani Arning

Trip of a Lifetime - lg rectangleThe Advent season is full of wonderful sensory experiences for children. Beautiful lights and packages, the smell of fresh cookies and spices, sounds of bells and music, tasting the exquisite flavors of cinnamon or peppermint, and the warmth of a house full of friends and relatives. But how do these sensory experiences help teach the children the story of the baby Jesus – the story of Christmas?

Trip of a Lifetime offers four weeks of Advent teachings, a Christmas Eve Children’s Time, and two more weeks culminating in Epiphany, with encounters that provide learning through senses, discussions, crafts, and activities.

The story begins with Hope, hope that follows the Christmas story from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Week 2 offers insights into Joseph and the Peace of knowing that he was doing what God had guided him to do by being Jesus’ father on earth. Then, during Week 3, the children will experience the Love of Mary, both for her God and for her son. The last week of Advent focuses on Joy: the Joy brought about by a little child born to poor parents who loved him and would nurture him to be the Savior of the world.

Christmas Eve Children’s Time tells the story of Christmas using wooden spoons that you will have directions for making. And the last two weeks of Christmas culminating in Epiphany offer insights into the Shepherds, Angels, and Magi, each of them bringing with them the experiences of who they are in a way children can remember.

Each week’s lesson offers background information and a special prayer for the teacher, a Welcome Station activity, sections on Sharing the Ancient Texts, Remembering the Story through Activity, and a Prayer time for the children.

This six-week curriculum is now available for just $55. Think how easy Sunday school will be when all you have to do to prepare is gather the materials for activities and crafts! If you cannot afford the purchase price, please email us. We want to get resources into the hands of those who need them!

To check out the format and content we’re offering, you can download a preview copy of the first week’s lesson here: 2017 Trip of a Lifetime PREVIEW – Advent through Epiphany

 

Purchase Trip of a Lifetime Advent Curriculum

This six-week curriculum offers children a sensory-rich journey through the seasons of Advent and Christmas, with Bible stories, crafts, games, and more. It even includes a special children's sermon for Christmas Eve!

$55.00

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Worship Resources

 Advent Worship Series: 
Becoming the Family of God

becoming-the-family-of-god-website-image

Do you love the season of Advent, but find yourself short on time and energy to prepare new themes and creative prayers for each week? Are you searching for materials that draw new insights out of the familiar stories in ways that help your congregation connect the story of Christmas to their own life stories?

To help you with that, Rev. Kerry Greenhill has written complete worship resources for the four Sundays of Advent plus Christmas Eve, including:

  • Advent candle liturgy (each week)
  • Pastoral prayer (each week)
  • Children’s time (each week)
  • Sermon starter or sermon alternative (complete reader’s theater/speech choir for Week 4)
  • Benediction (each week)
  • Communion liturgy for Week 2

Series Description:

Many people think of Christmas as a time to focus on family, and the images of picture-perfect family celebrations are everywhere for weeks beforehand. But when our real-life families don’t measure up to the Hallmark cards, Norman Rockwell paintings, or Macy’s ads, we can feel disappointed, embarrassed, stressed, or anxious. This Advent you are invited to prepare for the birth of Jesus with a focus on “Becoming the Family of God,” as we explore what the Bible tells us about Jesus’ family and our own families. Each week, we will explore the reality about families – joys and challenges – and light a candle of good news in response.

Themes are:

  • Advent 1, The Candle of Hope: “Every Family Has a History: Jesus’ Family Tree”
  • Advent 2, The Candle of Peace: “Every Family Has Conflict: Biblical Insults and How to Use Them” (includes Communion liturgy)
  • Advent 3, The Candle of Joy: “Every Family Has Secrets: Mary’s Little Problem”
  • Advent 4, The Candle of Love: “Every Family Has Insiders and Outsiders: God’s Family Values” (includes reader’s theater/speech choir as sermon alternative)
  • Christmas Eve, The Christ Candle: “The Family of God Is Unique – and Universal”

Download a preview copy: To make sure the series and resources speak to you and your context, check out this free preview version. The file contains the index and introduction to the series, two sample candle liturgies, Communion liturgy, two benedictions, and the first two and last two pages of the speech choir script. (We trust you won’t use or reproduce these materials in worship without purchasing the full package, below.)

Purchase the full package: If this package sounds like exactly what you need to simplify and invigorate Advent worship in your setting, you can buy now through PayPal, based on your congregation’s size (average total weekly attendance):

 

Becoming the Family of God: Small to midsize church

Liturgies, children’s message, and sermon starters for four weeks of Advent plus Christmas Eve. For churches whose average weekly attendance is under 200.

$39.00

 

Becoming the Family of God: Midsize to larger church

Liturgies, children’s message, and sermon starters for four weeks of Advent plus Christmas Eve. For churches whose average weekly attendance is 200 or more.

$49.00

After you have submitted your payment, you will be redirected to a page where you can download the complete package.

If you cannot afford the purchase price, wish to purchase only selected components, or have technical issues with PayPal, please email kerry@sacredstonesministries.org.

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Other Advent Resources

night-sky-treetops-starsPrayer for the Longest Night

In the midst of the holiday season, with its emphasis on hope, peace, joy, and love, many people struggle with more difficult emotions and life situations. Some churches choose to offer a “Blue Christmas” or “Longest Night” service close to the time of the Winter Solstice, when the day is shortest and darkest in the northern hemisphere. Others may wish to acknowledge during Sunday morning worship that Advent is a season of facing the hard realities of life as it is now, in light of God’s promises of what can and will be. Rev. Kerry offers this responsive prayer for either of these situations, or for personal use. Download for free, and if you choose to use it in worship, we would welcome a donation of $10 (or whatever you can afford) to support the ongoing work of Sacred Stones Ministries.

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Epiphany Resources:

Created and Claimed by the God of Love

sunburst over water buoyWritten by Rev. Kerry for Exploration 2015, an event for young adults discerning how they are called to ministry, this affirmation of faith in fresh, modern language is especially suitable for a Remembrance of Baptism or Confirmation service. Download for free, and if you choose to use it in worship, we would welcome a donation of $10 (or whatever you can afford) to support the ongoing work of Sacred Stones Ministries.

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