Year B: July 15, 2012
First Reading: 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19
The Jazz of Our Street by Fatima Shaik
(Written for ages 5-9)
Comment: “David and all the house of Israel were dancing before the Lord with all their might, with songs and lyres and harps and tambourines and castanets and cymbals.” This reading from 2 Samuel sparks our imagination as we picture parades and processionals of music and dancing. As David and the thousands who paraded with the Ark danced and made music, we can reflect on the way the presence of the Lord draws us in and evokes celebration. The sounds, emotions, and movements of such a parade can be further explored through Shaik’s poetic story of second lining in New Orleans’ Tremé. We, too, have been drawn into the parade “because the band called us today, and we pranced, played, and swayed…”
Second Reading: Ephesians 1:3-14
I Belong to the Christian Faith by Katie Dicker & Sam Dilkes
(Written for ages 5-9)
Comment: “In Christ we have also obtained an inheritance, having been destined according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will, so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, might live for the praise of his glory.” What is our inheritance and how do we live it out? I Belong to the Christian Faith tells of a boy’s experience of being Christian. Use this book to explore Sam’s spiritual life and connect, compare, and contrast it with the spiritual lives of the children in your church. Consider the ways this lectionary text and Sam’s story can open a conversation about what it is to be Christian, to belong to God, and to be part of the Church.
Gospel Reading: Mark 6:14-29
A Terrible Thing Happened: A Story for Children Who Have Witnessed Violence or Trauma by Margaret M. Holmes
(Written for ages 4-8)
Comment: Today’s lectionary readings do an interesting job of avoiding the experience of trauma through the omissions in the first text, and then facing trauma head on with the story of John the Baptist’s death. This is not so unlike the way we deal with trauma in our own lives: we can ignore or acknowledge it. It’s helpful to think about the ways children internalize the trauma they experience, as well as the ways we are called to help them process and talk about it. Holmes tells the story of a young boy who witnesses a traumatic event and the ways he is affected by, and eventually able to process, his experience.
This week’s Lectionary Links were written by Union Presbyterian Seminary graduate and regular contributor Noell Rathbun-Cook.