Faith In Action: Peace Parade, Songs or Vigil
Activity time: 0 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Peace pinwheels made in Activity 4 and/or pinwheel-making materials including copies of Handout 1, Pinwheel Template and Instructions
- Optional: Handout with lyrics for peace songs (Activity 5)
Preparation for Activity
- Peace Parade during Coffee Hour. Engage your minister, director of religious education and coffee-hour planners or hosts to plan a peace parade route through the congregational building to immediately follow worship. Have the route include all spaces where members and visitors, perhaps ending in your coffee-hour space. Ask your minister or lay leaders to announce during worship that congregants are invited to join the parade when it comes by.
- Peace Songs during Worship. With your minister, director of religious education and/or music director, select a date for the children to sing during a regular Sunday worship service. Ask your music director to lead or accompany the songs. Arrange a rehearsal time 30 minutes before the scheduled service, as well as extra meetings to practice the songs, if needed.
- Peace Vigil with Pinwheels. With your minister, director of religious education and/or social action committee, select a date for a peace vigil at your congregation. Invite your music director to lead or accompany the peace song(s) children learned during Activity 5. Announce the vigil to the entire congregation, encouraging adults to bring children. Send a press release to local media announcing the vigil and inviting your local community to join. Choose a space for your vigil, and set up the pinwheel-making materials and instructions.
Description of Activity
Peace Parade during Coffee Hour. As coffee hour begins, gather the children in a line with their peace pinwheels. Tell them they may reach out their hands and encourage people to join your parade as you walk the route. Lead the group in singing the peace song(s) while you parade in a single file through your selected route, holding the peace pinwheels. If you have a short route, walk it multiple times. You may also sing the same song over a few times. Finish in your coffee-hour space, and gather in a circle holding hands while you sing a final verse or another round of a peace song.
Peace Songs during Worship. Sing your selected peace song(s) during the worship service as the call to worship, prelude, offertory, or an anthem, or in place of a children's story.
Peace Vigil with Pinwheels. Gather for a vigil. Invite congregants and friends of all ages. Spend some time in silence and some time singing peace songs. Provide materials and instructions for participants to make peace pinwheels during the vigil and write or draw their hopes for peace. End the vigil by sharing your hopes and prayers for peace while holding the pinwheels.
Including All Participants
Be sure a parade route is accessible for anyone who uses a wheelchair or has limited mobility, design the pace and length of route to be fully inclusive.
If anyone in the congregation uses American Sign Language, invite that person to learn the words to the song(s) in advance, and sign them while others sing.
Young children may find it difficult to complete a pinwheel on their own. Designate some older children or adults to help as needed.