Lent Resources for all ages
Lent is the time in the church year when we being to prepare for Easter. A time to reflect and say sorry. It is often a time when people give things up or take up new things to focus on their commitment to God. We have drawn together a whole selection of resources, books and ideas for people to do at home. You will also find a verse and simple activity from Ash Wednesday until Palm Sunday
A Lent family challenge fromTogether at Home
View the challenge and download
Lots of Lent ideas from Flame Creative
View ideas from Flame creative
Helpful activity ideas on giving, fasting and praying with children
View the resource
Ideas and resources such as an Easter Countdown calendar from God Venture
View and download the resource
Wild Lent book from our very own Rachel Summers
View the book | Free Delivery when you spend £10
Follow Me, Daily Lent Guide for Families by Amy Robinson
A Lent Jesus Tree
View the resource
Videos and stories, trails and colouring sheets from The Bible Society
View the resource
Idea for a Lenten Cross, a twist on the Advent Wreath, from Catholic Icing
View the Lenten Cross resource
A beautiful, reflective portrayal of Good Friday (for older children)
Watch the video
Doodle, colour, draw and pray with Lenten colouring journey
View the resource
Try something new
Instead of giving something up during Lent, why not learn something new? You could learn a Bible passage off by heart, like a Psalm or the Beatitudes. You could challenge each other as a family and see who has the best memory.
Maybe with teens you could take a look at The Bible using these short videos from The Bible Project. Choose to look at books or a theme. Not sure where to start? Start with the one on Mark’s Gospel:
Make a Lent Action jar. This is a little bit like an Advent Calendar. Together as a family decide on some activities you could do during Lent, like acts of kindness, living plastic free for a day, praying for someone.
Write down a challenge for each day of Lent on a piece of paper and fold it up.Keep them in a jar and select one at random each day during Lent and challenge the whole family to give it a go. At the end of the day, discuss how it went for you. Was it hard/easy? Did you learn something about yourself/others/God?
A Daily Bible Verse and Thought or Activities
17 February: Ash Wednesday
Lent begins on Ash Wednesday. In many churches palm crosses from the previous Palm Sunday will be burnt then mixed with oil to make ashes. Each person is marked on their forehead with a cross as a sign of repentance and to begin the Lent season.
Sometimes these words are said by the priest:
‘Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return. Turn away from sin and be faithful to Christ.’
If you have palm crosses, then an adult in your family could burn them in a suitable vessel, mix them with a tiny amount of oil and sign one another with a cross, using the words above.
The God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13
Think about each word: hope, peace and joy. Take some time to really think what they feel like for you. You could draw a picture for each one. Pray for someone who needs hope, peace and joy in their life at the moment, asking God to be with them.
The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life. Pr 13
Take a glass of water and as you drink it think about how important water is for us to keep us healthy. Enjoy the coldness and refreshment it brings. It is wise to keep our bodies healthy. What things do you like to do to keep healthy?
Bible project: Water of life
Let the trees of the forest sing, let them sing for joy before the Lord, 1 Chronicles 16:33
Look at the leaves on the trees. Are there some that have been there all winter? Are some just starting to grow again?
Plants can bring healing in many different ways – it is good for us to get out and enjoy nature. Where do you like to go? Can you find out the names of different types of trees? Draw some leaves.
Bible Project: Tree of life
When I send clouds over the earth, and a rainbow appears in the sky,I will remember my promise to you and to all other living creatures. Never again will I let floodwaters destroy all life. Genesis 9: 14-15
The rainbow is a sign of hope for our world and God’s promise. How can we take better care of our world? What things do you do to care for the world?
“Our help is in the Name of the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.” Psalm 124:8
What’s in a name? Make some time to research the names of your family members. What do they all mean? Ask your parents why they chose your name for you?
There are many names in the bible for God. Look up a few. What do they tell us about God? How do they give us hope and support?
“I know that the Lord secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy.” Psalm 140:12
As a family have a think about the community you live in. Who here is poor and needy? Is there anyone you could help practically? Maybe make a donation to the foodbank or a charity who supports the needy. Is there a family friend who needs some help with anything? Could you do something to support them this week?
“My sheep hear my voice. I know them and they follow me.” John 10
Jesus has promised that we are able to hear his voice. Make some time to listen to a piece of worship music together or sit in silence and imagine taking a walk with Jesus in your favourite place. Ask Jesus what he might want to say to you and be open to hearing what he might have to say. Sometimes this might be something as simple as “I love you”. When you are finished, share with each other what Jesus said to you.
“How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house and you give them drink from the river of your delights.” Psalm 36:7-8
Prepare a family feast together. You could cook it yourself or get a takeaway or maybe just have a yummy piece of cake together and your favourite drinks. What do you enjoy about feasting together?
What are your favourite memories of feasts and celebrations in your life (maybe a wedding or a holiday experience or a birthday). God’s love for us is abundant, there is always more than enough. How does that make you feel?
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. [...] The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress” Psalm 46:1,7
Using a cardboard box build a secure fort together or a maybe a den. If it’s nice outside and you have woodlands near you, you could also build a cozy den in the woods. What does it feel like to take refuge in a solid fort/structure. What design features did you include to make them safe? Read the verses from Psalm 46 together. What do you think it means that God is our refuge and our fortress?
When you spend time with God, do you feel safe?
“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. from Isaiah 40:29-31
As a family go on a long walk together or organise a running race … something that will tire you out. Wouldn’t it be amazing if we never grew tired? If we always had enough energy? Discuss what are the things that help you keep going (food, encouragement etc). If you had limitless amounts of energy, what would you do with it?
Can you think of a time when you were surprised by your own abilities and strengths? How do you think God restores our strength?
The poor will eat and be full,and all who worship youwill be thankfuland live in hope. Psalm 22: 26
Do you have enough to eat? As you eat a snack or a meal today thank God for the food you have.
Pray for those who do not have enough today – thank God for foodbanks and others who help to ensure people get the food they need.
Jesus answered, ‘I am the way, the truth and the life.’ John 14:6
When you go for a walk, think about these words of Jesus. Whatever paths we take on our lives Jesus wants to walk with us. Thank God for that. If you have space, you could do some chalk drawings on a paved area in your garden.
Jesus said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’ John 8:12
Jesus said, ‘I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.’ John 10.10
God loves us and has made us the person that we are. What do you love to do? What hopes and dreams do you have for the future?
Draw a picture or write down your ideas. Thank God for the gifts and passions he has given you.
The gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
Why don't you do a Creation walk.
He saves the needy from the sword in their mouth; he saves them from the clutches of the powerful. So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts its mouth. Job 5:15-16
Where do you see injustice in the world today? What charities can you support by finding out more about them or donating to them?
I hereby command you: Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go Joshua 1:9
Do you sometimes feel frightened or scared? It helps to tell someone about it. Spend a few minutes talking to your family about your fears, then pray together for God to be with you. God will never leave you on your own.
For as the heavens are high above the earth, so is his mercy great upon those who fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our sins from us. Psalm 103:11-12
Are there things that you need to ask God’s forgiveness for? Fill a bowl with water, collect some stones and put a stone in the bowl whilst naming the thing you have done wrong.
You can do it silently, God will hear you and forgive.
But if you love me and obey my laws, I will be kind to your families for thousands of generations. Exodus 20:6
God gives us laws or rules to follow because he loves us and wants our live to follow the best ways. Cut out a heart shape and write down some rules you have in your family because they love you and want the best for you.
I can do all things through him who strengthens me! Philippians 4:13
How strong are you? Collect some objects that won’t break and are not too precious. Have a competition with others in your family- what’s the heaviest weight you can lift?
For how long can you hold a tin with your arms stretched out in front? Thank God for giving you health and strength.
In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16
With an adult, light a candle and focus on the flame. Notice where the shadows are, or where the light shows you something that was in darkness. God asks us to be like that light - shining brightly, showing the glory of God.
Ask God to show you how he wants you to shine.
I will sing the Lord’s praise, for He has been good to me. Psalm 13:6
How has God been good to you? Write or draw all the good things on pieces of paper and stick them to a large sheet. Find a space on a wall to put it, so you can be reminded every day.
The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him and he helps me. Psalm 28:7
God wants us to know that he is so strong that we don’t have to be! Find a piece of cardboard, maybe an old cereal box, and make it into a shield. You could write this verse on it, to remind you of God’s strength. View a shield template
He wants to give you exceeding, abundantly above all you could hope or imagine Ephesians 3:20
Have you ever filled a glass so full that the liquid overflowed? This verse tells us that God doesn’t just want to give us enough of his love, hope and joy - he wants to fill us up so that we overflow with love, hope and joy.
Can you imagine what that would feel like? Amazing. Ask God to do this for you today.
He is the bread of life John 6:35
God gives us everything we need to live, including our physical needs as well as spiritual. Have a go at making some bread. Enjoy making it, use all your senses: touch, knead the dough - sight, shape it to look as you would like - smell, whilst it is baking - hear, the sound as it is sliced hot from the oven - taste, whilst it is still warm. Yum! View this bread recipe
Sunday 14 March
The 4th Sunday of Lent.
Mothering Sunday was traditionally where all the people who worked in big houses as servants, went home to their ‘mother’ church, and they would pick flowers from the country lanes on the way, and give them to their mothers!
Now, we make cards and give presents to our mum’s, or those who are like mothers to us.History
He calls you friend John 15:15
Do you have a best friend? What characteristics do you think make a good friend?
The Bible says that God wants to be our friend - isn’t that amazing? And God would be the best friend you could have - make a list of all the good things God is, to remind you how he can be a good friend.
He is your healer Isaiah 53:5
When you hurt yourself, who looks after you? It feels safe to have someone to turn to when we are hurt. God can help us too, when people say unkind words to us, or we are sad or angry, or when we fall over. Take notice of how you are feeling today. Do you need to ask God to heal your hurt feelings? He will, if you ask.
He is the Prince of Peace Isaiah 9:6
God wants the world to be peaceful, but we know that often there are wars, arguments and fighting. God would love for us to be bringers of peace, and he will help us to be that if we ask. The dove is a sign of peace, and also for the Holy Spirit, which is God’s messenger who will help us live the lives God wants for us. Perhaps you can make a dove to hang somewhere? View this dove template
Honey is good for you, my children, and it tastes sweet. Wisdom is like honey for your life— if you find it, your future is bright. Proverbs 24:13-14
I know the best thing we can do is to always enjoy life, because God’s gift to us is the happiness we get from our food and drink and from the work we do. Everything God has done will last forever; nothing he does can ever be changed. God has done all this, so that we will worship him. Ecclesiastes 3:12-14
Think about all the things you love to do, that make you smile, or make other people smile. Try to do at least one ‘happy’ thing today.
The Lord your God wins victory after victory and is always with you. He celebrates and sings because of you, and he will refresh your life with his love.” Zephaniah 3:17
Do you have a favourite song? Why not play it and sing and dance. Maybe your family can join too! Here is a great song that praises God Big Family of God by Nick and Becky Drake
My child, listen carefully to everything I say. Don’t forget a single word, but think about it all. Knowing these teachings will mean true life and good health for you. Carefully guard your thoughts because they are the source of true life. Never tell lies or be deceitful in what you say. Keep looking straight ahead, without turning aside. Know where you are headed, and you will stay on solid ground. Don’t make a mistake by turning to the right or the left. Proverbs 4:20-27
Have you ever been trying to walk over rough ground? Did you trip over or stumble on a tree root or have to avoid deep puddles? This verse reminds us that with God, we can be sure of where we are going in our lives, that God will keep us on solid ground. Have a walk outside today - look up, look left and right and straight ahead. Thank God for
what you see, hear and smell.
Your love means more than life to me, and I praise you. As long as I live, I will pray to you. I will sing joyful praises and be filled with excitement like a guest at a banquet. Psalm 63:3-5
Have you ever had a posh meal, maybe in a restaurant, or for someone’s birthday? Plan a meal with your family, with each member of the family choosing one course. Then set the table, maybe with cloth napkins, flowers and candles in the centre. If you can, cook the meal together, and dress in your finest outfits to eat your banquet!
We have put our hope in the living God, who is the Saviour of everyone, but especially of those who have faith. That’s why we work and struggle so hard. Teach these things and tell everyone to do what you say. 1 Timothy 4:10-11
Easter is the perfect time to let your friends and family know about your faith in Jesus. Make cards and put a Bible verse inside, phone or message someone and ask whether you can pray for them. card with cross idea
God our Father loves us. He is kind and has given us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope. We pray that our Lord Jesus Christ and God our Father will encourage you and help you
always to do and say the right thing. 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
Do you have a special blanket or maybe a cuddly toy that you like to take to bed? Get comfortable with your blanket or toy and remind yourself that God can comfort you when you are unhappy or scared.
For now there are faith, hope, and love. But of these three, the greatest is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13
Draw a big heart on a piece of paper and write or draw all the people you love and who love you. Don’t forget to put God’s name in there too.
I am the Lord God. I created the heavens like an open tent above. I made the earth and everything that grows on it. I am the source of life for all who live on this earth, so listen to what I say. I chose you to bring justice, and I am here at your side. I selected and sent you to bring light and my promise of hope to the nations. Isaiah 42:5-6
When it is dark, look up at the sky, what can you see? Is it clear so you can see the moon and stars? Or is it cloudy, and you can see the clouds moving and dancing? Learn the names of the stars or the phases of the moon - Exploring our Solar System
I will never give up hope or stop praising you. All day long I will tell the wonderful things you do to save your people. But you have done much more than I could possibly know. I will
praise you, Lord God, for your mighty deeds and your power to save. Psalm 71:14-16
Can you spend the whole day thanking God for what you see, hear, eat, drink and for the people in your life? Notice, does that attitude of thankfulness change the way you feel or behave?
Palm Sunday is the beginning of Holy Week – a celebration of the final week of Jesus’ life on earth.
On Palm Sunday, Christians remember the time when Jesus went into Jerusalem, Israel’s capital city, riding on the back of a donkey. This occasion is sometimes known as the Triumphal Entry to Jerusalem. You can read the story for yourself in Matthew 21 and Mark 11. If you go to church you may be given a palm cross, to remind you of this story. palm cross instructions
As Jesus and his disciples approached Jerusalem, they came to Bethphage at the Mount of Olives. There Jesus sent two of the disciples on ahead with these instructions: “Go to the village there ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied up with her colt beside her. Untie them and bring them to me. And if anyone says anything, tell him, ‘The Master needs them’; and then he will let them go at once.” This happened in order to make come true what the prophet had said: “Tell the city of Zion, Look, your king is coming to you! He is humble and rides on a donkey and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” So the disciples went and did what Jesus had told them to do: they brought the donkey and the colt, threw their cloaks over them, and Jesus got on. A large crowd of people spread their cloaks on the road while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds walking in front of Jesus and those walking behind began to shout, “Praise to David's Son! God bless him who comes in the name of the Lord! Praise be to God!”
Weekend of Wonder, by Faith in Kids - This resource aims to encourage families to experience and enjoy the good news of Easter - at home, outdoors and with others - and give them confidence that they can open the Bible together at home.
The Wonder of Easter by Ed Drew - an Easter journey for the whole family.
Free Good Friday download including audio and video clips
Holy Week at Home resources 2020, created by many of the teams in Chelmsford Diocese
A beautiful, reflective portrayal of Good Friday (for older children)
Interactive Easter Trail
For churches/local area includes the Easter story and a challenge at each station from Together at Home
Maundy Thursday and bread sticks
Resurrection Rolls - celebrate the empty tomb with food!
View the resurrection Rolls
Messy Church at Home, Easter ideas from 2020.
Have an Easter fire together. In some Christian traditions, people come together to light a fire during the early hours of Easter Sunday, welcoming Easter Day and the hope of Jesus’ resurrection. Have a bonfire together before dawn and maybe use it to cook some breakfast.
What are you hoping for in the weeks and months to come? What has given you hope over the previous month? What can you do to bring hope to the people around you?
The Big Scrumptious Faith-Filled Feast
Books for younger readers and families
The Easter Story - a story book for families to enjoy together by Martyn Payne
Contact the Chelmsford Christian Bookshop to order any of these titles, email bookshop@chelmsford,anglican.org .