Saltshaker - 13

Thought for today

He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and their hearts of the children to their fathers.
Malachi 4:6

Coming up …

Godly Play
Godly Play training day led by Alison Seaman
All Saints, Writtle,
Saturday 16th January,
10.00am – 3.00pm. £10 each,
bring a packed lunch, drinks provided.
See here for details.

Takeaway 2010
Exploring Christian Spirituality & the spiritual development of children & young people.
Romford Baptist Church, Saturday 6th March 2010, 9am-4.30pm
Sessions include; Creating sacred spaces, exploring prayer, mentoring, developing self-worth, being Jesus & hot topics
Contact Richard Shaw or ring 01708 730032

X:site ….
children’s events for 7-11s supported and run by local churches
Dates for 2010 .......
Jan 31 … 3-4.30 @ Romford Baptist Church
March 21 … 3-4.30 @ Salvation Army
May 23 … 3-4.30 @ Romford Baptist Church
July 11 … Junior Solid (get it in the diary early)
Sept 12 … 3-4.30 @ Salvation Army
Oct 31 … time tbc @ Romford Baptist Church … 01708 730032 … for details

Charity Concert - ‘After the Fire’
Emmanuel Church, Billericay, Sunday 6
th December 2009 at 5.00pm.  no tickets, donations on the door, with proceeds going to ‘Just Care’ a charity working with children in Uganda.

Children’s Ministry Conference
22 to 24 January 2010. Click here for details

Inspire 2009-2010 … We’re underway but you can attend individual modules or sessions. Download a copy of the brochure from & click on Inspire.

Thanks for the responses so far …. Just getting down to organising dates and venues …. More to follow.


Damaris is an educational charity with a Christian foundation - but working with people of all faiths and none. We They aim to communicate biblical Christian faith in a contemporary popular culture. Damaris operates in three departments... Church, Schools and Media. Well worth a look.

Paperless Christmas
I’ve mentioned this a couple of times before but it is proving very popular. Paperlesschristmas uses the web to tell the familiar Christmas story in a thought-provoking and fun way. Instead of angels, expect postmen, and don't be surprised if some of the traditional animals are replaced by cars and motorbikes. If you are a children's or youth worker or leader, why not check out the resources produced to support the movie at

for anyone working with children & young people. These courses are of special relevance to those in health care.
Mon 30th Nov 09 Emotional First Aid
an Overview
Fri 11th Dec 09   Self Harm
Understanding and supporting children & young people who self harm
More details - Tel: 01245 264348. Download brochure outlining all courses from here

Bible Bop Workshop DVD+CD
best seller at this year’s Children's ministry conference.

Had a few enquiries recently about children and giving; here are a few links you may find interesting;
Liverpool Diocese
Resources for Encouraging Stewardship among Young People offer two areas of free resource for stewardship activities with young people. In addition, CPAS and Christian Aid also provide resources. 

Episodes contains 6 different sessions for use with youth groups and young people to explore a range of stewardship issues. The sessions cover a range of issues including : 
Talents and spiritual gifts, Working for the common good rather than individual goals, Using our resources wisely, Generosity. It can be downloaded for free by clicking here.

Teen Talk
The Giving in Grace website includes "Teen Talk" - a range of resources for teenagers which aims to enable teenagers to begin to address the question of giving in a way that is meaningful to their world as they experience it now.

Christian Values website
Great site with a whole host of video & pdf downloads for use in schools or with anyone who works with their school community covering areas such as; christian values, spirituality, hope, creation, endurance, forgiveness …….

Towards a theology of the child
Jason Goroncy from the Uniting Church in Australia has a site which is a series of articles on 7 theologians (including Karl Barth) and their perspective on children. Plenty of food for thought!

Christian distinctiveness in education
Archbishop Rowan recently addressed the Church of England Academy Family Launch Conference. His speech outlined his thoughts on the Christian distinctiveness in education, and you can read it all here. 

Christmas is coming…..
A few more sites which might offer you some ideas for activities through Advent, Christmas and Epiphany:
  • Amongst the offerings from SMG Lifewords are ideas for services, assemblies, children's activities and PowerPoint presentations.
  •  The Bible Society offers Christmas Unwrapped , a beautifully illustrated retelling of the Christmas Story which could be projected as part of a Christmas service. You can get free stickers as well!
  • The Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut has a library of ideas for the season, including material to use in church notice sheets, homemade Advent calendars and an Advent Wreath booklet.
  • The Uniting Church in Australia continues to add to its Advent and Christmas ideas site.
  • If you are interested in exploring the Jesse Tree this year, this site this site has lots of information.
  • Damaris Advent Calendar .... Take a look here
  • C of E advent calendar here
  • Some Christmas ideas for schools here
Exploring Christian faith with children
Anne le Bas is a parish priest in Kent. Her website offers ideas for prayer and storytelling with children, and a `survival kit' for teachers including a load of school assembly ideas.

Education Sunday – 31st January 2010
The theme of Education Sunday 2010 is Called to Serve. - exploring the vocation to teach and disciple children and young people. The resources for worship, prayer stations, assemblies and drama can be used not only to explore education in a school context, but also as a means of discipleship amongst children and young people in churches. It's an ideal opportunity to commend and pray for all who are involved in education – formal, informal, support staff, teacher, child – and to encourage others to consider whether Christian education might be something to which they are called...

Off the Bookshelf

Children's Spirituality
In this gem of a book, Dr Rebecca Nye explores what children's spirituality is – and why it matters. She presents the theory of her research in the light of her practice as a children's leader. Each chapter includes points to consider and discuss, helping churches think through how to support and serve their children and possibly change their current practice using the S.P.I.R.I.T. principles – Space, Process, Imagination, Relationship, Intimacy, Trust. A `must have' for anyone concerned with children's spiritual growth.
Children's Spirituality 
By Rebecca Nye
Pub. CHP                    ISBN: 978-0-7151-4027-7     £8.99     The Holy Bible new Century version.
Hardback ISBN 1-86024-482-3.
Paperback ISBN 1-86024-483-1.
Publisher: Authentic Media, 9, Holdom Avenue, Bletchley, Milton Keynes, Bucks, MK1 1QR.
Attractive, readable & practical version for children & families.

Walking with Jesus Through Advent and Christmas (PDF Download) … Murray McBride
A biblical 'story map' to guide readers on a spiritual journey as they prepare for Christmas. Suitable for individuals, families, church-based children's groups or schools as part of daily devotion or a weekly project, this book, which includes photocopy permission, contains 31 daily reflections, full instructions for building up the story map and suggestions for prayer and activities. Imaginative use is made of the idea of a 'visual pilgrimage', as accompanying the story map itself is a large 'Maporama' which gives the geographical setting of the story, allowing both children and adults to stand in the shoes of those involved in the Christmas story.

Play and Pray through Advent (PDF Download)
A family resource: Stories and activities for the Advent and Christmas season
Lynn Chambers, Kay Warrington and Nai Catrin Williams
Using simple yet effective visuals, Play and Pray through Advent brings to life the events surrounding the birth of Jesus, his early years and the beginning of his ministry, making it interesting and engaging for all the family, especially with children ages 5-7. With simple guidelines, it couldn't be easier to explore the themes week-by-week at home, or through midweek groups and clubs at church. Like its popular sister book, Play and Pray Through Lent, you have the chance to use story cloths, song, and get messy with crafts, all while helping children learn more about the Advent and Christmas story.
Play and Pray through Advent is ideal for all ages and all the family, and especially with children age 5-7. It is also suitable for clergy, children's workers and Sunday school workers.

See you,