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Special relationships

To think about how we can become better people (SEAL theme 6: Relationships).

by Manon Ceridwen Parry

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To think about how we can become better people (SEAL theme 6: Relationships).

Preparation and materials

  • Bring with you items of clothing that are worn for special occasions, for example, veil/wedding dress (if you have one!) or stylish hat (for weddings); something black, such as a black tie or hat (for funerals).

  • Sweatshirts/loose shorts, or any items of clothing that can be put on over your clothes, with these words pinned on them: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, forgiveness, love.
  • The Bible reading is from Colossians 3.12–14 (see section 2).


  1. Start by talking about the significance of clothes. If they have a school uniform, ask them if they wear it on a Saturday. When they say no, ask them why not – because they only wear it to school (of course)!

    Talk about special clothes for special occasions – show the black tie, and the wedding hat/dress/veil. What might they wear if they were going for an interview for a job?
  2. Explain that in the Bible a man called Paul wrote a letter to tell people what they should ‘wear’ every day. But he didn’t mean clothes.

    This is what he said: ‘As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.’
  3. What we act like is much more important than what we look like. So when we get dressed in the morning maybe we should remember to put on the following things (as you talk about the words, and explain any that may not be understood, put on an item of clothing. Hopefully the children will be amused!):

    –  compassion (sharing other people’s sad feelings when they are having a hard time)
    –  kindness
    –  humility (not going around thinking we are better than other people; knowing we always need God’s help)
    –  gentleness
    –  patience
    –  forgiveness
    –  love.
  4. (Pull off some of the extra clothes you’ve put on) Thankfully, we don’t have to dress up in all these clothes every day.

    But we do need to put on these ways of being – to treat other people as we want to be treated, and to show love and respect to everyone, whoever they are.

Time for reflection

Listen again to what Paul says about the qualities we should put on. As you listen, choose just one and think about how you could ‘clothe yourself’ in it.

(Read the reading again.)


‘Lord of all hopefulness’ (Come and Praise, 52)

Publication date: April 2012   (Vol.14 No.4)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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