Mary and Martha

In Luke 10:38-42 we meet Mary and Martha. They are two grown up sisters living in Bethany. They are mentioned three times in the Life of Jesus. You can also read about them in John 11 – when their brother Lazarus is bought back to life – and in John 12 – when Mary anoints Jesus’ feet with expensive perfume.

You could tell all three of these stories over three sessions or pick a couple. It’s good to include stories about women in our groups as so many of the listeners are women and a lot of Bible stories are about men! I always try to be mindful of this when I’m planning which stories to include.

To tell the story – 

In the story bag I had the three main characters – Martha, Mary and Jesus and some pots and pans, a wooden spoon and a cloth. You could have an apron or a duster. As you introduce the characters take them from the story bag and say ‘hello’

‘Mary and Martha were two grown-up sisters. One day Martha invited Jesus to come to their home for a meal.

Jesus was very happy to go to Mary and Martha’s house.

When he got there Jesus began to talk about God. Mary so wanted to listen to everything that he had to say. She sat down and listened.

But Martha had a lot to do! There was tidying to be done. There was the cooking to be done. Pans needed stirring!(Use the props from the story bag – encourage the children to mime the actions too) Food needed chopping! Plates needed wiping! Water needed pouring! She was busy, busy, busy! (Can you say that with me? She was busy, busy, busy!)

Mary sat still and listened to Jesus.

Martha was not happy!

She said to Jesus, ‘ Lord, don’t you care that I’ve been left to do all the work by myself?! Tell my sister to help me!’

But Jesus didn’t do what Martha said. Instead he said to Martha, ‘You don’t need to worry so much about all the things that need to be done. You need to listen to my words too.’

Today we can listen to the words of Jesus by listening to stories about him and reading the Bible.’

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Craft Idea

Make people collages – you could add the words, ‘We use our ears to listen’

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Jairus’s daughter – Luke 8 Bible story idea

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Meet Jairus!

To tell the story from Luke 8 I used some simple pictures. I introduced ‘Jairus’ first and asked the children to repeat his name and say hello.

The pictures I used were a selection of symbols and a photo of a house that I made from a shoe box, and one phrase. I realise that the children weren’t necessarily going to be able to read this but the adult listeners are there too! Plus is a useful prompt for the storyteller 🙂 They are all held together with string and so make one large visual aid by the end of the story.

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Simon’s mother in law

This is a simple craft/story telling prop idea for the story Simon Peter’s mother-in-law being healed of a fever. (Mark 1:29-31)

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The bed is made from an egg box and the people from cardboard rolls.

The man with four friends – duplo storytelling

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One of the homes Jesus visited was the place where the paralysed man was healed. Luke 5:17- 26. If you look very closely you can just see crowds of people in the model of the house. To tell the story to young children you could use lego duplo figures.( Of course avoid the clearly identifiable charcters such as Bob the Builder) The mat is brown paper and material – chosen because it has to be rolled up. It fits really well in the duplo figures hand.

If you didn’t want to use duplo for telling the story you could let a small group play with the figures and model afterwards to retell the story to you.

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Homes Jesus visited

At toddler group this half term each bible story will be about a house that Jesus visited. Today I talked about the homes where we live. The craft was a collage of different types of homes and the collage I had made was my introduction.

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I talked about how Jesus didn’t stay a baby in a manger (I showed a picture of this) but he grew up and became a man. He visited lots of peoples homes but they were quite different to our homes today.

The model of a Bible Times house was hidden in a bag – I explained that we were going to hear lots of stories of the homes Jesus visited – and showed the model. I explained about the flat roof and the steps at the side.

Next week we begin the stories. With older children I would have gone on to tell a story right away.

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To make the house – and I’m sure you could do better – I used a shoe box with a lid and covered it with brown paper. The steps were a bit tricky – I used corrugated card from some packaging and folded it concertina style.

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