Activity time: 20 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Sheets of beeswax
- Small cookie cutters
- Candles, at least one inch in diameter
Preparation for Activity
- Arrange with the worship committee, minister, and/or religious educator for the children to decorate candles for congregational use during a Sharing of Joys and Concerns or similar ritual. Make sure flame-lit candles may be used in the congregation's worship space, and that worship leaders are comfortable with the use of beeswax to decorate candles-some vegans may object.
- Obtain materials. Beeswax sheets may be available in a craft store; or, order online from a vendor such as Candlewic. Look for cookie cutters small enough for shapes to wrap onto a candle, in various, appropriate shapes such as hearts or stars.
- Test this activity with the materials you plan to use. Make sure the cookie cutters will create beeswax shapes small enough to fit on the candles you have chosen. You will need to press the beeswax shapes firmly onto the candles for them to stick.
- Optional: Arrange for the children to speak to the congregation about why they decorated the candles and to place them at the altar during a worship service.
Description of Activity
Children decorate "caring candles."
Say that the group will do something now that will be a sign to others in the congregation that the children care.
Indicate the supplies and invite participants to cut out shapes from the beeswax to decorate the candles, then press the shapes firmly to the candles until they stick.
While children work, ask them to think about how we all experience good times and bad times. Think about times when someone cared enough about them to celebrate good news or to be with them when they were sad or worried. Maybe these decorated care candles will help comfort the people who will light them during joys and concerns. Knowing the children decorated the candles especially to show caring may help people feel loved in the community and better connected to other members.
If you have arranged for children to present the candles during a worship service, help them articulate what they can say.