Have a birthday party for Jesus:
Have a birthday party for Jesus, you may even want to bring presents that you can donate (Canned foods for the mission) Make it lots of fun. Its a good way of reminding young children what Christmas is all about. A chance to celebrate Jesus’ birth.
Kids love singing and older members of the parish love having them visit. Get them to dress up, visit a few places and take the families Carol singing. Some things to prepare before you go:
Get the kids to make wee gifts the week before
Make sure to ring the people you are visiting before heading over to make sure it is a good time for them
If you have some instruments like shaker, bells, tambourines take them along with you too
Song words are pretty essential so have sheets printed ready to go
You could organise to finish off at the church with pizza or fish n chips
Traveling Mary and Joseph
This is a very cute advent activity and one that can involve all ages. You may even want to invite families in the community to join in the fun, preschool music group families, brigades or homework club.
Have Mary and Joseph figurines (preferably non-fragile) that will travel around your parish families over advent. Mary and Joseph can have a diary for people to write the wee adventures that Mary and Joseph got up to with that family. Encourage people to take photos and add them in if they can. If you have a blog or Facebook page get people to add photos to your church page as well so others can follow their journey.
This is a great idea to use with younger kids.
For preschoolers you could use the stones each week and get the kids to help tell the story using the stones.
For older children you could get them to make a set of their own to take home as a reminder of the story.
Christmas eve in PJs
St albans union parish run a Christmas in PJs event for Christmas eve. Invite families from the community to come in their PJ’s, have fish n chips on the lawn (Weather dependant) Then sing some carols, read a story, do a drama whatever you like. It’s a fun way to bring families together on Christmas Eve
Have the Nativity story set up for the whole of advent and offer it as a place of reflection and meditation. If you are wanting the community to be able to access it make sure it is in a place that is accessible to them out side of church opening hours.