…how can we show compassion? And why do we need to? We used the Virtues Guide for reference to discuss what compassion is, and how we can practice it: looking after a family member who is sick, feeding someone who is hungry, helping a friend who is stuck with his homework, caring for a pet, etc. The children had quite a few ideas!
As an example, we looked at and read the story of Lua Getsinger, who is wanting to help ‘Abdul’-Bahá in ‘Akká. He sends her off to look after a sick man, but she is so revolted by the state he is and lives in, that she runs back to the Master. He becomes quite sad and tells her, that if she wants to serve God, she must serve this man – if he is sick, she must tend him, if his house is dirty, she must clean it … which she then goes back to do, exactly as ‘Abdu’l-Bahá asked her.
We thought that this story showed us quite well, that we not only need to think of other people and show them compassion, but actually think of them BEFORE ourselves (of course, that’s not always easy :)!) The memorisation was a breeze again – these children are amazing!!
“Blessed is he who preferreth his brother before himself.” –Bahá’u’lláh
As a cute reminder of compassion – we made a series of animal finger puppets – find a template with some of the animal shapes here. The children had much fun colouring, naming and cutting out the little shapes and play little improvisation skits with their animal pets…
That was it for today – please note: there is no class next Sunday (29th of May), but we’re back on the 5th of June (Queens Birthday weekend). Have a lovely couple of weeks!
We had a cosy class in the kitchen of the community centre today 🙂 Our theme was servcie, and while we thought of doing some baking or cooking for family and friends as a service project, we might keep that activity for a later class…
After some prayers to start out lesson with, we sang Stefan Brown’s song called ‘Service (with a smile)’. It was such a fun way to get going!
Then the children memorised our quote of the day:
“That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race…”
Even though there are a few quite tricky words in there, they all learnt it really quickly, after we broke it down into smaller groups. Well done everyone!
Our craft activity for the lesson was to create little cards with ‘service pledges’ on them – for our families. It was great to see what kind of things the children came up with: from doing dishes, making milo or banana splits, to complete free choice of what the parent can wish for. And the beautifully decorated cards were a great sight! Fabulous!
We ended our class with a story about ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and Lua Getsinger. It is set in the Holy Land (Akka) where ‘Abdu’l-Bahá asks her help/service to go and visit a sick man. The man is so sick and his home in such a state, that Lua flees in fright at seeing the man so unwell and the unpleasant surroundings he lives in. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá very sternly sends her back though, saying that if the house is filthy she needs to clean it, and if the man is sick, then she needs to tend him… What a task! She of course does go back and does as she’s been asked to. Understanding that being of service is to do what is needed to make others feel better…
You can have a look at today’s lesson in pdf format here: 5_Service
See you all next week 😉