April 10, 2014

Getting Kids (and Adults) to Focus During the Sacrament

I can't possibly be the only one that has become distracted during the sacrament.

You know, all of a sudden you notice the Priests stand up and the Deacons start walking forward to return their sacrament trays and you scratch your head trying to remember if you ever even once thought about Jesus Christ during that special Ordinance.

I mean sometimes I really am bouncing a crying child, or trying to keep a kid from spitting on the kids in front of us...but sometimes there is no one to blame for my distractions but myself.

Taking the sacrament requires preparation and concentration, and it isn't always the children that are having a hard time focusing on Jesus Christ and what the sacrament is really about. It is the adults too.

I found myself getting just as much as my kids out of John Bytheway's new Children's book.

The Sacrament, tells the story of a young boy who travels to visit his Grandpa's house for the weekend and how his experience changes the way he thinks about the importance of the sacrament. His Grandpa shares his experience as a youth when he noticed the complacent behavior of others gathered in the chapel to partake of the sacrament.

There were hundreds in the chapel but the worshipers were few, 

And I couldn't help but wonder what the Lord Himself would do-

Yes, I couldn't help but wonder what the Lord Himself would say

Should He walk into the chapel  while His Saints behaved this way;

Would His loving eyes be saddened; would His countenance be grim

While He there observed and listened to a service meant for Him?

I've read this book to my children several times and they love the illustrations and the message. The pages seem familiar as they also weekly sit through sacrament meeting. I've discussed the Symbols of the Sacrament with them. This can be easily done using the resource in the back of the book. It discusses the symbols associated with the table, the cloth, the hymn, the bread, the water, kneeling to pray, and the right hand. This book is a great way to deepen your children's understanding of the sacrament, its sacredness and its cleansing power.

John Bytheway is an instructor at the Brigham Young University Salt Lake Center. He served his mission in the Philippines and earned a master’s degree in Religious Education at BYU. He has published dozens of books and audio programs and lives in Salt Lake City with his wife, Kimberly, and their six children.
Nathan Pinnock studied at Utah State University, the University of Utah, and Atelier LeSueur in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and he earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Illustration at Brigham Young University. Between years of school, Nate served a mission in Frankfurt, Germany. He illustrated books and magazines for fifteen years and now spreads his time between his illustration, sculpture, fine art, and teaching. He is a creator. His paintings and books can be found in galleries, businesses, and homes across America. Nate lives in Holladay with his wife, Alison, and kids.


Ashley Z. said...

I love this! Even as an adult it's hard to focus during Sacrament meeting.

Sing! Blackfoot Sing! said...

This looks wonderful! Thanks for sharing!!