Manna from Heaven

The week after Thanksgiving, the story of Manna from Heaven provides a very different perspective/experience of food! In this story, the Israelites were given food by God each day, but were only able to collect enough for one day and couldn’t store up any for future days as it would go bad. The only exception was on the sixth day, when they could collect enough for two days so they would have enough also for the Sabbath.

This can be a challenging story as we live in a society of refrigerators and bulk stores that encourage us to stock up – and a culture in general that prizes people who save for the future rather those who live day by day. What is the challenge we might hear in this story? When have you trusted that what you needed would be there for you when you needed it? Do you find it hard to trust that what you need will be given to you?

One of our activities was to make “bread” out of delicious-smelling gluten free playdoh (with cinnamon and other spices!) and another was to begin a project to make a circular seasons of the church year calendar.

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Youth Volunteering at Out of the Cold!

On November 1, we will begin serving at the Out of the Cold program at Blythwood Baptist Church (near the Sporting Life store on Yonge south of Lawrence) each Saturday evening from 6-8pm (this can also count for high school volunteer hours). We will also participate in a Nov 22 Presbytery (United Churches in Southeast Toronto) day-long retreat at the Christian Resource Centre about youth poverty in Toronto and Christian responses to it. Through a variety of activities, we will be engaging in both service and advocacy, action and critical reflection. Please contact Sheryl for more information or to express interest!

out of the cold poster

Children’s Ministry Survey

Hi All! We are wanting to evaluate our children’s ministry programs at Fairlawn, both now and as things change in the future. Please take a few moments to fill in this survey to give us a sense of how things are working for your family! We will be sending the survey around again in a year and probably again the following year – please help us track how things are changing so we can continue to tweak what we do. Thank you!!

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/D2KS7DP

Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is a time when we as the church think about “extending our own dinner tables” beyond just the people who are actually there. Sometimes when we pray before Thanksgiving dinner we remember those who do not have a meal. Sometimes we donate food to food banks for those who struggle to buy enough food. Sometimes we invite people who might be alone to our house to eat. One way that Fairlawn “extends its table” is through the soup ministry. This ministry gives soup to people who are going through a difficult time or have been sick or injured. Or, sometimes we give soup to people just to let them know that we care and are thinking of them.

Spirit Space has been talking about the themes like community, sharing, and gratitude so far this year. One way that some kids chose to respond to the Bible story we talked about, the story of the Good Samaritan, was to make cards to go along with soup for the soup ministry. The images that you see on below are pictures of those cards. When we made the cards, we contributed to the work of “extending the table” that the soup ministry does. Since today is Thanksgiving, we invite everyone at Fairlawn to think about their own ways to extend God’s table of love.

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He Qi

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He Qi is one of my absolute favourite artists. His style really brings Biblical stories to new life for me personally! I thought I might share a link here to his online store, in case you are looking for some art to put up at home or to look at with your family to see Bible stories through a different, visual perspective.

http://www.heqiart.com/

Structured Activities and Executive Functioning

http://blogs.edweek.org/teachers/teaching_now/2014/07/study_too_many_structured_activities_hinder_childrens_executive_functioning.html?cmp=SOC-SHR-FB

This article was an interesting read! I hadn’t really thought before about how having the opportunity to structure one’s own activities might actually be helpful to brain development and learning, but this article connected that for me. As we in Spirit Space explore ways to provide agency and freedom of response to kids, it seems we might be onto something!