Proverbs 17:6 shares what most grandparents already know: "Children's children are the crown of old men; and the glory of children are their fathers." On the first Sunday after Labor Day in the United States, those "crowns" get the opportunity to honor their grandparents in a special way. If you are planning services or Sunday school class events for that day in church, celebrate and honor the grandparents in your congregation.
Grandparents on the Catwalk
Tell your congregation you are going to hold a fashion show with the grandparents in the congregation acting as models. Get together with the grandparents beforehand so they can prepare. Set up a "catwalk" for the grandparents to walk up and down. When they get to the end of the catwalk, be there with a microphone to interview them. Explain that each grandparent has something they are modeling for their grandchildren. Let them share a story that gives them the opportunity to model faith, hope, love, generosity or holy living. Give each grandparent a flower or a sash to wear for the day.
Grandparents in the Spotlight
Invite three to seven grandparents to each of the teen and preteen Sunday school classes. Set up the front of the room like a television talk show. Seat the grandparents in the chairs for guests and let the Sunday school teacher be the host. Let each guest share her favorite thing about being a grandparent. Then let the kids in the class "call in" and ask questions for the grandparents to answer. Give each grandparent participating a thank-you card signed by all the members of the class.
Grandparents Through the Eyes of a Child
In the weeks leading up to Grandparents Day, videotape grandchildren answering the question, "Why is a grandparent special?" Get children of all ages. You can even ask an infant and video the gurgling noises he might make -- or you can bounce a toy in front of him to make him smile. Compile the video and edit in music and Bible verses that go along with the things the children say. Show the video on Grandparents Day during the church service.
Grandparents in Play
Invite grandparents into the Sunday school classrooms of young children. Start by teaching your class a song about grandparents such as the one found at nationalgrandparentsday.com. Then separate the class into small groups with at least one grandparent in each group. Tell them they are going to play house, but that the children are going to be the grandparents and the grandparent is going to be the grandchild. Give each of them a different scenario to act out such as having dinner together, visiting a parent in the hospital, having a sleepover, going to church or another activity. Afterward, ask the kids what it was like to be a grandparent. Did they think the grandparent in their group acted the way they do as a grandchild? Finish the class period by having grandparents and grandchildren make a craft together such as Flowerpot Kids where they decorate a pot, fill it with Easter grass and then put a picture of the child and the grandparent on a stick and plant it in the pot.
- Ministry Tools: Grandparents Day & Clergy Appreciaton Ministry Resources
- Christian Grandparenting Network: Home
- The Idea Box: Grandparents Day List
- "Grand Days: Ideas for Sharing Faith Moments Between Grandparents..."; Group Publishing; 2008
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