Born Among Us
USPG, The Methodist Church, 2003

£15.00 (Approx)
3.4
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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

Inspired by the highly acclaimed The Christ We Share pack, Born Among Us is: User friendly, designed for all-age worship and learning, ideal for children’s work in churches and schools.

What do you get?

An all inclusive resource pack containing: eight activity templates, eight activity sheets with stories, one nativity play, worship booklet with 14 songs and carols, notes for schools and teachers, study sheets and 16 colour postcards and acetate pictures. Available to buy from Methodist Publishing.

Who is it for?

All-age resource for ages 5 and above.

Cost?

£15.00

Review

  • What is the overall quality of material presentation?

    Good, full colour postcards and acetate nativity scenes are great resources for discussion and thought. Other resources printed on glossy paper with easy to read sections.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    Not explicitly stated, although aims are stated in a general sense: Discover the relevance of Jesus born among us today, explore the birth of Jesus by artists globally, learn about Christmas in other cultures and worship during advent and Christmas.

    How accessible are the leader's notes?

    Leader's notes are easy to read, and there is extra instruction for teachers if being done in a school/college setting. However, the notes do require some time to interpret, the leader must be able to fit the different parts of the resource together in their own way.

    Who could lead it?

    An experienced church leader, teacher, kids worker. As Born Among Us can be done as all-age, skilled individuals are required to tailor sessions to everyone and decide on what they will include/exclude in sessions.

    How helpful are the participants' resources?

    Reporting sheets, study sheets and crafts provide food for thought at any age. Full colour images are brilliant for thinking about Christmas in other cultures.

    How good is any digital material?

    N/A

    How much prep will I have to do?

    Preparation will take some time as the leader has to choose what they want to incorporate and also decide on their own layout/timings. As sessions include crafts and cooking, this requires time to collect materials prior to the session. More time is needed if choosing to do the nativity play also. Having said this, as the material is so flexible with regards to what is included, this means leaders have a certain say in how long preparation will take.

    Is there website support? Links?

    No, none specifically mentioned.

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    Children are encouraged to interact in cooking activities and crafts. Discussion is also encouraged about Christmas in other cultures via the reporting sheets and study sheets.

    How well does it cater for a variety of both learning and delivery styles?

    This is done well as Born Among Us is aimed at all-age audiences so is suitable for young people and adults in many learning styles. For example, there is a nativity role play, crafts and cooking (which are relevant to the themes) and worship for young people. There are also many opportunities for discussion and prayer for older participants.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    Resource has been aimed for use in: church study groups, worship services during advent/Christmas, schools and colleges, the community and with children and youth groups in churches.

    How well does it encourage people to work together in applying the material?

    Participants are encouraged to apply material in reporting sheets and activity sheets. This allows them an opportunity to think about Christmas in other cultures and keep remembering that Jesus is for everyone.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    No direct Biblical references other than in the ‘All age worship around the world' service and ‘Tree of faith carol service'. Indirect Biblical references throughout the nativity play.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    In these two sessions, biblical material is referenced for a reader in an all-age services to find and read aloud.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    This is done in the study sheets and reporting sheets. Participants are encouraged to consider the birth of Jesus is many contexts around the world, and ask questions which are evoked from this.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    No - open to all. This resource challenges participants to go out of their comfort zone with Jesus at Christmas and think about how others around the world worship him.

  • How well does it inspire people towards whole-life discipleship?

    Inspires people towards whole-life discipleship at a foundational level by focusing on the meaning of Jesus' birth and the good news it brings.

    How well does it encourage and enable people to grow in their faith?

    Encourages and reminds participants that Jesus came to save everyone. The resource offers a unique perspective on the birth of Christ around the world and enables people to grow in their faith by learning how Jesus is celebrated worldwide. This broadens participants views of God and encourages them to delve deeper into understanding God in more contexts than just their own.

    How well does it stretch faith and vision of God and his purposes?

    As this resource is intended for advent and Christmas, a focus on the significance of Jesus' birth allows participants to encounter the vision God has for all his people; salvation.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    ‘born among us' connects with real life issues not just day-to-day but worldwide. For example, it encourages deep thought and discussion around topics such as persecuted Christians in China.

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    This is not a main focus, but is indirectly achieved by having a brilliant nativity to perform in any setting, and a carol service too.

    How well does it encourage local or network-based community involvement?

    This is done by the actual running of the sessions themselves, as they cane done in schools, churches, colleges, after-school clubs or community settings.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    This is done in great detail and depth via the study sheets which are used for discussion. Participants are encouraged to think about Jesus and Christianity around the world and wrestle with issues which are relevant to Christianity in a cultural sense. For example, persecuted Christians, poor and persecuted Christians in the Middle East and who Jesus is to other religions are all topics for discussion in this resource.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    Indirectly encourages global mission by reminding us all that Jesus for for everyone. Participants are encouraged to think about how they can aid God's mission, whether that be giving money, time or skills. There are also stories from people in each location which may encourage people to go out and do the same.

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