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It's the Spirit You Need

To explore what Christians mean by the Holy Spirit.

by The Revd Guy Donegan-Cross

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To explore what Christians mean by the 'Holy Spirit'.

Preparation and materials

  • A pair of trainers, a football and a piece of burnt toast.
  • You will need to know a recent pop song.
  • A Jamie Oliver cookbook (optional).


  1. Say that you went into a shop yesterday and bought a pair of trainers. The shop manager told you that they used to be David Beckham's trainers. Show them to everyone. You think that if you put them on you will be able to play football like David Beckham. Put the trainers on and get a football. Ask if anyone thinks they can tackle you. Get a volunteer to try and allow them to tackle you easily.

    Wonder why the trainers aren't working! Try another volunteer, who again tackles you easily. Wonder out loud if the trainers aren't enough. Maybe you need the spirit of David Beckham as well, to be like David Beckham, in order to play like him.

  2. A month ago you went into a shop and bought the shirt you are wearing. The shop manager told you that it used to be Robbie Williams's shirt. Now you are wearing the shirt you think you should be able to sing like Robbie Williams (or another pop star of your choice!). Sing atrociously. Ask if that sounded like Robbie Williams, and look disappointed! Wonder whether perhaps you need the spirit of Robbie Williams in order to sing like him.

  3. A few weeks ago you went into a shop and bought a second-hand toaster. The shop manager told you that it had been Jamie Oliver's toaster (the famous chef - show his book if you have one). Now you can make toast just like a world-famous chef. In fact you have brought some with you. Would anyone like to try it? Bring out the piece of burnt toast. Offer it around. Look disappointed when people don't want to eat it. Wonder if you need the spirit of Jamie Oliver in order to be like him.

  4. Say that you once heard a story of a young man who went to work for an artist who made the most beautiful stained glass in the world. The young man wanted to be as good as the master, but hard as he tried he just couldn't do it. So he borrowed the master's tools, thinking that was the answer. After several weeks the young man said to his teacher, 'I'm not doing any better with your tools than I did with mine.' The teacher replied, 'It's not the tools of the master you need, it's the spirit of the master.'

  5. Explain that 2,000 years ago Jesus spent time on this earth as a man, with his friends, but just before he went back to God he told them that he was going to give them his Spirit. Sometimes the Spirit of Jesus is called the Holy Spirit. And Christians believe that the Holy Spirit is here today. Jesus gives us the Spirit so we can be like him. You and I can become like him. We can't do the things that Jesus did on our own, just like I can't play great football, or sing, or cook. But if we have the Spirit of Jesus, then he promises to help us be like him and follow him.

Time for reflection

Lord Jesus,
Thank you that you give us your Spirit
so we can be more like you.


'A still small voice' (Come and Praise, 96)

Publication date: July 2002   (Vol.4 No.7)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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