The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Mary in labor & delivery?

While visiting our son and family in Oakland, Calif., on the first Sunday of Advent, we invited our then 3-year-old granddaughter, Claire, to walk with us to the nearby Lutheran church. Once we were seated, she began asking questions: “Where is the baby Jesus?” and “When is Mary coming on the stage?” When I told her “three more weeks” she asked, “Is she in the hospital?”

Anita Londgren
Thousand Oaks, Calif.

I appreciate the book, but Gabriel
“I appreciate the book, but Gabriel already said to name him ‘Jesus.’ ”
One Sunday in Advent, my prop for a children’s sermon was an ultrasound picture of an 8-week-old fetus with a prominent umbilical cord. I compared how parents waiting for their unborn child are like people waiting for the Messiah—some things they know, some things they think they know and some things they won’t know until the baby comes. To which one child chimed in, “One thing I know for sure is ... it’s a boy!”

Karen McNeill-Utecht
Lehigh Acres, Fla.

My husband, Norman, and I attend Sunday school regularly at our church, Highland Lutheran,La Center, Wash., even though we’re 85 and 81. We love to sing with the children during their opening and put our pennies in the “church bank” when our birthdays roll around. Norman was excited to play one of the three kings in the Sunday school’s Christmas pageant—for the third year in a row. He sat in the narthex, waiting for his turn to go down the aisle, notrealizing the sign on the bulletin board above him advertising the women’s Bible study read: “Lord Give Me Patience.” Once it was called to our attention, we agreed it was appropriate.

Irene Fischer
La Center, Wash.

My friend’s 4-year-old grandson, Zach, had been practicing his role as shepherd for the Christmas pageant. But he was really interested in the angel, who, dressed in dazzling white, would announce, “Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people ....” Zach didn’t forget those words. When his mother told him there would soon be a new baby in the house, she asked, “What will you say to that?” He replied, “I will say, ‘Behold! I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people.’ ”

Morris and Grace Ulring
Minneapolis, Minn.

Our pastor’s topic for the children’s sermon was different names for God, including Yahweh. He explained why we use the name and had everyone say it together: “Yahweh,” “Yahweh.” Then 8-year-old Cordell used it in a sentence: “Yahweh in a manger.”

Bill Andrews
Santa Claus, Ind.


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