Sharing Our Faith

As faithful followers of Jesus, we are all called to be in relationship with God and love our neighbors as ourselves. Passing these beliefs down to our children and grandchildren is one of the most important jobs we have as a faith community. Let us not forget that our children have much to teach us as well. The Bible stories about some of God’s faithful followers who prepared the way for Jesus’ entry into the world captivated 11-year-old Spencer Cobbs. She decided to share this Catechesis of the Good Shepherd lesson with the residents of Kirkwood by the River. Spencer shows us what it looks like to deepen our faith then carry this message to others.

Learning about the Jesse Tree and teaching others about it has helped me understand that Jesus was not the first person on Earth. There were thousands of years from when humans first walked the Earth and when the Great King was born.

It all started in the Level 3 atrium at IPC. Two of the catechists, Sarah Warburton and Kay Roller, introduced
our group to the Jesse Tree. They printed pictures of people from the Bi- ble who came before Jesus with stories about each person. Each picture represented a person or place Jesse

Everyone helped color and cut out the pictures. We glued the pictures on a big piece of paper. The first tile depicts Jesse, sleeping in his bed. Growing out of his bed is a tree, which weaves in and out of the other pictures with its branches, leaves, and twigs. At the top of the mural sits Jesus with seven doves and seven words-
knowledge, counsel, piety, wisdom, understanding, awe, and strength. It was cool how all the pictures fit together to create a big, vibrant stained-glass window mural made by the entire class.

Now, how does this stained-glass window mural go along with the lineage of Jesus? You can put the pictures' captions in order to make a booklet describing how Jesse, King David’s father, has a dream sent to him by the Lord. During this dream, Jesse visits some of his ancestors; and starting with Adam and Eve, his dream progresses all the way to Jesus, who tells him that God will take care of all his problems. These seven words at the top of the mural are what helped Jesse not to worry as much.

At my mom’s suggestion, I shared this story with residents at Kirkwood by the River. As we read from the Jesse Tree story, each resident colored a square of the mural with markers. One of the people who enjoyed it most was my grandmother, Rita Spencer. She has been living at Kirkwood for about eight months, and she is very happy there.

I put the pictures colored by the residents together to make a stained-glass mural. For about a month, the two murals, mine and the Kirkwood residents', were displayed in the lobby. Several of the residents told me they loved the story and enjoyed coloring, just like they did when they were a child, like me. Teaching at Kirkwood helped me realize how much it can mean to someone to smile, wave, or have a simple conversation. It can make them happier than you might think.

We invite you to deepen your faith on Sunday mornings this fall. IPC is once again kicking off the fall term on Sunday, August 19 from 10-10:50 am. Adults will enjoy a progressive breakfast and time for fellowship with class leaders and other members in the third floor classrooms. Children and youth will gather on the first floor for games and fun activities.