Activity time: 25 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Wood frames, plain with wide border for decorating
- Newsprint, markers, and tape
- Newspaper to cover work tables
- Acrylic paint (various colors), paintbrushes, and bowls of water
- Permanent markers
- Smocks or large tee shirts to protect clothing
- Optional: Animal and/or paw print ink stamps
Preparation for Activity
- Obtain wood photo frames and other needed supplies at a craft store.
- Identify a congregational leader, such as a minister or the chair of a Caring Committee, who can receive the decorated frames and distribute them to members who have lost a beloved pet. Alternatively, arrange to give the photo frames to a local pet cemetery or veterinary office.
Description of Activity
Participants create frames for pictures of beloved pets that have passed away.
Ask participants if they have ever experienced the death of a pet. If any have, invite volunteers to name anything that made them feel better when they were grieving over their loss. Ask if looking at photographs of their pet felt comforting. What about times when other people expressed their sympathy? Invite the children to give both of these kinds of comfort to people in the congregation, by making them a frame to hold a photo of the pet that has died.
Lead the group to decorate photo frames. Work with the group to craft an expression of sympathy for children to write on the back of the frames, and post the message on newsprint for children to copy. Ask the children to sign their names or initials on the back of frames they decorate.
Give the frames to the congregational representative who can offer one to any member who has lost a pet. Ask them to say the frame is a gift from the children in the Signs of Our Faith community, to anyone who wishes to keep the memory of a beloved pet that has died.