The story of how Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane is a popular subject for Easter Sunday school classes, but it can be difficult to find relevant crafts. Jesus brought his three closest friends to the garden to pray with him, but they fell asleep. Jesus felt immense sorrow because he knew he would be betrayed and crucified on the cross. While he was praying, angels came and strengthened him for his final hours on earth. Make crafts that depict the garden, prayer and angels.
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Garden Prayer Jars
Give each child a glass jar, and let the class use puff paints to draw a garden on the outside of the jar. Show the kids how to draw flowers, trees and garden animals. Tell the children how Jesus went to the garden as a place of retreat so he could pray. Explain that we should also find quiet places to pray. Tell the children to keep the jar in their rooms to remind them to pray. Tell them they can even write their prayers down and put them in the jar. After a while, they can read the prayers and see which ones were answered.
Praying Hands Card
Give each child a piece of construction paper. Show the children how to fold it in half horizontally. Pair children so they can help each other trace their hands on the paper, with the thumb positioned directly on the fold. Children should cut around the outline of their handprints, and when the paper is unfolded, they will have a praying-hands card. Have kids write "Jesus Prayed and So Do I" on the outside. Tell children that Jesus needed his disciples to pray for him. We all need people to pray for us when we're having a problem. Have children choose someone who needs prayer, and write a note to that person inside the card.
Before class, cut silhouettes of Jesus praying from black construction paper. Give each child two white pieces of construction paper, one positioned on top of the other and temporarily attached with tape at the top. Give children sponges and inkpads in various sunset colours: yellow, orange, red and purple. Have each child tear a 2-inch strip off the bottom of top piece of paper, exposing the other piece underneath. Let them dab a sponge on an inkpad and then colour the exposed portion of paper. Tear off another 2-inch strip off the bottom of the top piece of paper and let children apply a different colour to the exposed paper, blending the second colour with the first. Continue until the whole paper is covered with sunset colours. Children should then glue the silhouette of Jesus onto the paper to remind them of how he prayed at night.
Angels of Encouragement
Make handprint angels to remind children about how angels strengthened Jesus in the garden. Give each child a piece of black construction paper and a white construction paper triangle. Have the kids use a foam brush to apply a layer of gold paint to the inside of their hands. Let the kids make two outward-facing handprints on the black paper to represent the angel's wings. Have them glue the white triangle (pointed side up) in the centre of the hands to represent the angel's robe. Let them make one final thumbprint above the triangle tip to represent the angel's head.
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