Friday, November 27, 2009

A sea of Children

November 21 and 22 was quite the learning experience and event as the Cathedral hosted a workshop on Saturday and all of the participating community members were coming to the 11am service wich would include a bible study time for the children. The prior Thursday and Friday I was in the office trying to figure out what a children’s communication workshop and bible study for some 60-75 children was to look like. I have never taught a workshop nor bible school before especially not with a range of children from 1years old to 12 years old. It was a dynamic learning experience and I was so motivated I actually stayed focused in the office those two days, a small miracle. Well, as things go in Latin Amercia, even with a 2.5 hour meeting on Friday night the communication workshop on Saturday didn’t have a set plan, not as I would consider it. Working in such a fashion really highlights my US upbringing with deadlines, high expectations and solid planning and agendas...this is so not the case here. So as the folks were filling the pews on Saturday afternoon, I sit down with Father Diego and ask him (yet again) ‘ok, what is the plan? How do you see this coming about?’....Well the workshop ended up being with Father Diego in the sanctuary with all the adults and children older than 12 giving his communication discussion while Kate, Brittany and I took all of the some 75 children and split them into three teams. Kate got the little ones, Brittany the middle ones and I took charge of the older group. So I was bound and determined to use some of the work I had done to lead children into a communication workshop. After playing a full round of charades I lead the kids in communication skits. They were great! All through charades and then they blossomed during the skits, especially the group that was being the most difficult. They were dynamically involved whether performing the skits or as the audience, which included a bad communication example followed by a good example. Each of the mini skits was intermingled with the children who were watching answering questions about the situation. It kept them on their toes and made them feel apart of the skit. Unfortunately I didn’t time it well and we only were able to perform one skit, but a good start. The bummer and highlight was when the trouble group transformed into the most energetic and eager team as they came up with their own skit theme, family violence, with it’s bad and good examples only to run out of time. But I was so very proud of them. The bible study went very similarly as all the children went into the salon and I separated the oldest to discuss the gospel lesson. Despite having to share the room with 60+ other children under 10 the discussion was still successful. Most of the children didn’t have a real concept or understanding of Christ (10-14 year olds). I am not even sure if I had a concept of Christ at that age….Dad fill me in on that please. So the discussion was more about making the connections between Christ as God, Christ as human and what it mean to choose Christ as your Lord. The gospel lesson was Pilot asking Christ if he was king of the Jews. I concentrated the kids on “’y kingdom is not of this world’”. I personally had a lot of fun with it. We defined kingdom, king and we also discussed that the kingdom of Christ is in Heaven and earth. I look forward to this coming Sunday and Hope I have the opportunity to teach the Bible study again.

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