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Love monster

by Helen Bryant

Suitable for Whole School (Sec)


To explore Valentine’s Day themes.

Preparation and materials

  • You will need a copy of Love Monster by Rachel Bright (HarperCollins, 2012).

  • Choose a current hit pop song with a love theme and have the means to play it at the end of the assembly.


  1. Today is Valentine’s Day. I guess most of you knew that already. Either you’re pleased about that fact because you received a card or even a present and you can spend the day feeling romantic because you are with someone or else you hate today and see it as a commercial enterprise by card companies and florists to make money or even a day just to make those who are single feel isolated, on the shelf or lonely.

    Whatever the case, today I want to look at the story Love Monster and how the character described in the book thought that he would never find love. 

    Read Love Monster by Rachel Bright.

  2. Let’s remember that what one person loves another may not. Our choices and our tastes may be very different from each other, whether we are gay or straight, like blondes or prefer the dark, sultry type, the bad boys or girls or the geeks.

    What Love Monster is saying is that it doesn’t matter what you look like or when you find love, but, when you do, that person will see beyond looks and see what and who a person truly is. The monster in the book almost gives up on finding love, but love finds him.

  3. Now might be a good time to remember that love comes in many different guises. The love a parent has for a child and vice versa, love between siblings (yes, somewhere deep down you do love your brother or your sister) and the love between a husband and wife or two partners in a relationship and the love between friends. All of these kinds of love, all its different types, show the human capacity to love and be loved can take many different forms and we have all kinds of different ways to show it.

  4. On this Valentine’s Day, let me share a letter with you. Hopefully, from our story and this letter, you will see that, no matter how distant love seems or how unloved you feel, when you least expect it, love finds you. 

    My sweet husband, John, and I were married for 46 years. Each Valentine's Day, he’d send me the most beautiful flowers and a card with five simple words: 'My love for you grows.' Four children, 46 bouquets and a lifetime of love were his legacy to me when he passed away two years ago.

    On my first Valentine's Day alone, ten months after I lost him, I was shocked to receive a gorgeous bouquet addressed to me  . . .  from John. Angry and heartbroken, I called the florist to say there had been a mistake. The florist replied, 'No, ma'am, it's not a mistake. Before he passed away, your husband prepaid for many years and asked us to guarantee that you’d continue getting bouquets every Valentine’s Day.' With my heart in my throat, I hung up the phone and read the attached card. It said, 'My love for you is eternal.'

Time for reflection

Dear Lord,
Thank you for all the love we have around us,
Thank you for the many different types of love we experience every day and the way that they affect us. 
Let us know, when we feel unloved, that love will find us and your love for us is eternal. 


Chosen current love song 

Publication date: February 2014   (Vol.16 No.2)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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