Year C: March 10, 2013
First Reading: Joshua 5:9-12
The Way We Do It In Japan by Geneva Cobb Iijima
(Written for ages 5-9)
Comment: For this generation, desert wandering and manna have been the familiar, normative way of life. Now they prepare to leave it behind to settle in the land of Canaan and eat the fruits of its field. What is it like to move to a new home, to leave behind the things you’ve known? In his commentary on the text, Daniel M. Debevoise wonders if they were sick of manna or they would miss it. He suggests their experience of new flavors signifies a new stage in life. (Feasting on the Word, Year C, Volume 2, p100) In The Way We Do It In Japan, Gregory experiences new flavors, languages, and customs. Even in the midst of a life transition, people often hold on to something familiar. For the Israelites it is the practice of Passover, for Gregory it’s a lunch of PB&Js.
**If you’re looking to explain Passover to the children in your church, check out The Miracles of Passover by Josh Hanft.
Second Reading: 2 Corinthians 5:16-21
Jane & Mizmow by Matthew S. Armstrong
(Written for ages 4-8)
Comment: “All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation…” As members of Christ’s body, we are called to participate in the ministry of reconciliation. Reconciliation is a big word with a powerful meaning. Explore with the children of your church about what it means to be reconciled. In hearing about the friendship of Jane & Mizmow, children will see a friendship form, break, and be repaired. This simple story beautifully illustrates the sorrow of broken relationship and the joy of reconciliation.
Gospel Reading: Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32
The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown
(Written for ages 3-7)
Comment: “But while he was still far off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion; he ran and put his arms around him and kissed him.” As we think about the father running to welcome his son home, we imagine he must have tirelessly waited and watched for his boy, so full was his heart with love for his son. This extravagant love and grace is mirrored in the classic children’s book The Runaway Bunny. The bunny dreams of all the ways he can run away from his mother, yet in the end, she is there to catch him in her arms, hug him, and feed him a carrot.
**Another book that has been reviewed in Lectionary Links before but would connect well with this text is Down The Road by Alice Shertle.
The Lectionary Links this week were written by regular contributor Noell Rathbun-Cook.