Welcome to St Paul's Online Sunday School!
When we can't gather in person at St Paul's, let's learn and play in a virtual way! Each week, Linda Davis Siess provides Bible-based learning and activities for families. ( Let me know what you think! You are in my prayers! - Linda)

Sunday, April 5, is Palm Sunday - here is the reading appointed for this day
(P.S. The link also has these words in Spanish):

Matthew 21:1-11

1When they had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2saying to them, ‘Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me. 3If anyone says anything to you, just say this, “The Lord needs them.” And he will send them immediately.’ 4This took place to fulfill what had been spoken through the prophet, saying,
5 ‘Tell the daughter of Zion,
Look, your king is coming to you,
    humble, and mounted on a donkey,
      and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’
6The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; 7they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them. 8A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9The crowds that went ahead of him and that followed were shouting,
Hosanna to the Son of David!
    Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Hosanna in the highest heaven!’
10When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, ‘Who is this?’ 11The crowds were saying, ‘This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.’

This Sunday is Palm Sunday!

This week's reading invites us to recreate Jesus' triumphant procession .
Find a space for your special scene - the center of a table, a hallway, wherever there's room for some creating and play. Take your time, wonder, and enjoy.

the king is coming to you
Think about kings, and royalty. How do we treat them? How do they treat us? What do kings wear, and do? Contrast that with Jesus' procession. Can you be a king if you don't wear a jeweled crown or ride in a golden carriage?

Find or make a figure that can represent Jesus. Add a crowd of people, too. Lego people? Paper cutouts from a magazine? Stuffies?

a donkey and a colt (the foal of a donkey)
My favorite donkey is from a children's book from when I was little, "Brighty of the Grand Canyon" - but nowadays, probably the most famous donkey is the star of "The Wonky Donkey" (no doubt you've seen the video of the Scottish granny reading it aloud; check it out online for some cheerful giggles).

Did you know that the cross on a donkey's back represents their important role in Jesus' life? A donkey carried him before he was born, while escaping during the Holy Family's flight into Egypt, and then - on Palm Sunday. Some legends claim it was the same donkey. You could write a poem or a story about that!

Let's make a donkey. Do you have clothespins and paper? Try this one: http://www.freefuneaster.com/easter-crafts/clothespin-donkey-craft/
Or take a look at Pinterest. . . there are lots to look at!

cloaks on the road
Create a symbolic road: use a table runner, newspaper, or any sort of a long rectangle. If it's nice out, maybe use a garden, driveway, or sidewalk. Now strew it with cloaks! Doll clothes, scarves, socks, construction paper cutouts of jackets. . . (I've never seen a road covered in clothes, though I've heard of gentlemen covering puddles with their jackets - maybe in the movies! Is it anything like hockey's hat trick? Why would people spread out their cloaks?)

cut branches from the trees
The Episcopal Church reminds us that any shrubs, leaves, or branches will do - if palms are unavailable to us. Use real greenery, or craft your own with paper. Plenty of "palm" crafts are found on Pinterest - tracing hands creates cute palm fronds. Spread some of your palms onto your "road" - and hold on to some for waving. (Palms also make a very nice decoration for windows, doors, or mirrors.)

shouting "Hosanna"
Hosanna is an interesting word. In the very olden days, it meant something like "Help! Save us!" - but when Jesus arrived for this special procession, Hosanna turned into something joyous: "We are saved!!! THANK YOU!"

Now enjoy a pretend parade down that homemade symbolic road: with Jesus, a special donkey, cloaks and palms covering the way; branches waving and dipping; everyone shouting "Hosanna"! What else would be good to shout? How can we say "Thank you!"

"Who is this?"
Who is Jesus? Do you remember the many names given to him at his birth?(Wonderful, Counselor, Almighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace!)
What do you know about him? How do you answer: "Who is this?"

This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.’
Here he is! We are saved! Thank you! HOSANNA!

And:
Write about or illustrate your impressions of Palm Sunday; make a movie of your parade. Send me pictures !

P.S. Look for an email on Sunday , sharing lots of easy and meaningful resources for families - for our walk together through Holy Week. I especially love "Holy Week in a Box" - you'll see the link. And. . . not too long from now - Easter Sunday!

I'm sending prayers for your health and well-being, peace, and joy - Linda