The Easter Story is always one that is difficult to tell the children because it not always easy to know how much or how little information to pass on to the children. I am always aware that some children can be very sensitive to people being hurt, so explaining that Jesus dies on the cross can easily upset their feelings.
This year, I thought of going about it by allowing the children to tell me what they knew and then building a little upon it. I first asked them what they liked about Easter (chocolate eggs, egg hunts and the Easter Bunny). We then moved on to the person of Jesus. I asked them who Jesus was and received some really good answers such as Jesus is someone we pray to and Jesus loves us all. We looked at pictures to see what Jesus looked like. I asked them what Jesus did and they told me that he taught people how to be good and healed sick people. Then we started looking at the tricky bit. Did everybody love Jesus? I helped the children understand that some people really loved Jesus and listened to all he said but there was a group of people who did not like the fact that so many people wanted to listen to him. Instead of trying to be like him so that people would like them too, these people decided to get rid of Jesus. So they put him on the cross where he died … but being very special, he rose again on Easter Sunday when everyone was happy to have him back again.
On Friday, we will be having a prayer session for the feast of Our Lady of Sorrows together with the J1s and 2s. On Thursday, the children will put together all their good deeds so that they will be able to offer them up on Our Lady on Friday. Therefore the last day that I will be collecting hearts with good deeds on them is Thursday. However, don’t worry, I know that the good deeds initiative was very popular with the parents. I will explain to the children that having practised so much, they will be able to continue to do the good deeds without the need of writing them down on the hearts.