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All Saints

To celebrate the festival of All Saints (1 November) and demonstrate that saints are ordinary people who love God.

by The Revd Catherine Williams

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)

Aims

To celebrate the Christian festival of All Saints (1 November) by demonstrating that 'saints' are ordinary people who love God.

Preparation and materials

  • Several home-made shiny haloes, e.g. made from tinsel, coated wire, ribbon, etc. You could manage with just one or two if you swap them around in 3. below.
  • Some pictures of saints (optional).

Assembly

  1. Show the children the home-made haloes and ask them to guess what they are. Prompt and develop until they guess correctly.

  2. Explain that in many Christian paintings people are shown with haloes. The halo shows that the person is precious and special to God - i.e. 'holy'. We call these people 'saints'. Sometimes they were very brave and died because they believed in Jesus, or sometimes they were very good Christians. Show some pictures of saints if possible.

  3. Say that we also call people saints who are very kind or helpful - we might say, 'She's a real saint'.

    If the context is appropriate ask the children to name some saints - then link the names given with children in the school, e.g. St Thomas, St Catherine, St John, St Clare, etc. Ask children with these names to come up and wear a halo.

  4. Explain that for Christians 1 November is called 'All Saints Day' - it's the day Christians remember and give thanks for every saint.

    Say that many people believe that only very special and holy people are 'saints', but in fact we are all very precious and special to God. In the Bible St Paul said that all people who loved God and tried to do right were 'saints' - so in a way we are all saints too.

  5. Ask the children to stand up if they think they might be a saint - encourage them all to stand up. Ask everyone to be on the lookout for haloes today!

Time for reflection

Dear God,
Thank you for the example of all the special people who have loved you.
Help us to love you too,
and to remember that we are all your special 'saints'.
Amen.

Song/music

'I was lying in the roadway' (Come and Praise, 88)
'When the saints go marching in'
'Seek ye first the kingdom of God'

Publication date: November 2003   (Vol.5 No.11)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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