SUNDAY SCHOOL @ HOME – Commemoration of St. Francis of Assisi/October 4, 2020
Bible Passage (for parents)
St. Francis of Assisi (Matthew 11:25-30)
Today is the day that we remember someone who lived a very long time ago. That person is St. Francis of Assisi. St. Francis was born in 1181 or 1182, in the city of Assisi in Italy. His parents were wealthy and owned a business that sold cloth. He was originally named Giovanni, but his faith often traveled to France and really liked it so he was called Franceso or Francis. Today’s video tells the story of St. Francis as if he were alive today, even though he lived a very long time ago. In fact, St. Francis died 794 years ago!
Watch this video together:
St. Francis came from a wealthy family. He decided to give away all he had to serve those who were poor. Francis wore a robe with a piece of rope as a belt. Within ten years, he had five thousand followers who also gave away what they had to serve the poor and work a robe with a piece of rope as a belt. They did this to show their love for God. St. Francis also cared for the world that God created. He called the sun our brother and the moon our sister to remind us that we are all connected to the things God created because we are also created by God. St. Francis was very fond of animals. It is said that he would talk to animals and that he would even tell birds about God and God’s love for them! That is the reason that many churches have a pet blessing as they remember St. Francis of Assisi on October 4 each year.
- St. Francis gave away everything he had to serve God. You may not do that, but how can you serve God?
- What is a way you can care for creation?
- What is your favorite animal?
Make Me a Channel of Your Peace. This song is based on a prayer that is said to have been written by St. Francis of Assisi. It is sung by a choir of people of all ages from England.
We have a simple, cool craft for today. Take a piece of yarn or string and tie a “knot” or “bow” at one end. Put Cheerios, Apple Jacks, or Fruit Loops onto the yarn or string, filling it to the top. Then tape a ribbon on top or tie a loop so that it can be hung from a tree to feed the birds.
Have a blessing of your pet at home.
Begin with prayer: Almighty God, you have made us and all living things. For our pets who give us joy, we thank and praise you. We trust your care, O God. Make us faithful as we care for our pets. In so doing we share in your love for all creation. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Read Matthew 6:25-33: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you you of little faith? Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
Place hands on pet, and bless: “Blessed are you, Lord God, maker of all living creatures. You called forth fish in the sea, birds in the air and animals on the land. You inspired Saint Francis to call all of them his brothers and sisters. We ask you to bless this pet [Name]. By the power of your love, enable it to live according to your plan. May we always praise you for all your beauty in creation. Blessed are you, Lord our God, in all your creatures! Amen.” (Canticle of Creation by St Francis of Assisi)
Pray the Lord’s Prayer
Pastor Dan Fugate, Assistant to the Bishop for Discipleship in the Indiana-Kentucky Synod, ELCA, put this lesson together for Sunday School @ Home. There will be a new one for each Sunday while we are unable to gather together physically in our congregational buildings. Contact him at [email protected].