Assembly to Key Stage 1 (KS1/Infants): The Lord’s Prayer – Part 1

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Equipment: scarves or rope

Gathering Video:

and

Introductory activity

Show the pupils one of the scarves, tied in a knot. Ask for 2 or 3 volunteers to come to the front and tie another scarf/rope in a knot like the one you have just shown them.

After the volunteers have tied the scarves in a knot, explain that you managed to tie yours without lifting your hands off either end of the scarf. Each of them had to lift one hand off the scarf to tie it. Ask them if they think they could do it without taking their hands off.

Allow them to try for a few minutes, tying themselves in knots while you assure them that it is possible! (By picking the scarf up by either end with arms unfolded it will always be impossible to tie it in a knot without releasing one end.)

When they have given up, untie your scarf and show them how you did it. You should fold your arms in the conventional way, placing one hand over and one hand under the other arm. From this position, pick up one end of the scarf in each hand and simply unfold your arms. A knot will be tied in the scarf.

Allow them to try using this new method.

Although I told you it was possible, you didn’t know how to do it until I showed you the right way. Once I taught you, then you were able to do it for yourself.

Have you ever watched someone doing something and wondered if you could do it too? Maybe you’ve watched a magician performing a trick, or watched your favourite footballer do a really clever move, and you’ve wanted to learn how to do it.

 Prayer

In the same way, the disciples wanted to learn how to pray, but they were a bit unsure how to do it.

Then Jesus taught them how to pray…

There are lots of way to pray:

  • Together, as a school, class, as a family or with a couple of friends, or in Church
  • Alone, maybe at the end of the day, or when we want a quiet reflective moment to ourselves
  • When we are walking on the Moors or on the Beach and can see the beauty of God’s creation
  • When we are worried, or scared or don’t know what to do
  • When we want to thank God
  • “Hands together, eyes closed”
  • Looking to heaven with our hands outstretched
  • Using a candle or some prayer beads to help us focus on God
  • Looking at a holy picture (‘ikon’) to inspire us
  • Whilst reading the Bible

The Most Important Prayer

Because prayer isn’t just delivering a list of things we want to God, but is a conversation, it’s important that we think about prayer and over the next few weeks we are going to look over the most important prayer of all: the one that Jesus showed us how to pray.

Even though I know many of you know the words to this most important prayer – the only prayer you will ever need – have we ever stopped and thought about the words? Some of the words are a bit funny, and you may not yet fully get what it all means, but let’s start…

Our Father

All prayer goes to God. Sometimes we might ask others, both here and in heaven to pray with us, like angels or Saints or even Our Blesséd Lady Mary, but we never pray TO angels, saints or Our Lady because all prayer is to God, so our prayer begins like a letter addressed to God, who we like to think of as “Our Father”

God is like a parent – a mum or a dad – the best parent anyone could have. We have a relationship with God, a special relationship just like Mums and Dads have with their children. We don’t have to be afraid of a loving caring parent.

Yes, Human parents often let their children down – sometimes very badly. But God never does. Jesus told people, “your heavenly Father is perfect”. (Matthew 5:48)

who art in heaven

Young people sometimes say: “My Dad is bigger than your dad!”

Praying Our Father who art in heaven is like saying:

“We’ve all got the same heavenly Dad – and He’s much more powerful than anyone in this world”

art is just an old-fashioned way of saying “is”. The form of Lord’s Payer we use is quite old-fashioned and traditional because it’s the same words your parents and your grandparents would have learned in school or in church, and I think it’s good that we all learn the same prayer so that we can all pray together.

Hint: although we often like to think of heaven as up in the Sky, it’s far closer than that. Heaven is everywhere because if Heaven is where God is, and God is in everything, then Heaven must be all around us, we just have to work hard to spot it sometimes! You don’t have to think of heaven as somewhere with clouds, but the most awesome place there is, because that’s where God is!

Hallowed be thy name

Hallowed means “holy” and God’s name is holy, special, set apart and not to be treated with disrespect.

This is why I get a bit upset when we hear (especially) young people say “OMG” because it’s not right to use something so special to me used just used so unthinkingly. Please think about what you say, and realise that although it’s all over the television, it’s a bit rude.

If we respect God, then we’ll treat his name with respect, and yes, say his name confidently in prayer, speak of him lovingly, but not use his holy name as a swearword.

…and we’ll stop there for today!

There are lots of ways in which we can pray the Lord’s Prayer

  • We can say it
  • We can sing it
  • We can think it
  • We can act it (and we might do that in a few weeks time!)

Do you remember the Nursery Rhyme version I taught some of you last year! We won’t do that this time, but here is a song version which I like and it helps support what I have said today because the refrain repeats the words “hallowed by thy name”

It’s a Calypso tune from the Island of Trinidad in the West Indies.

 

Our Father, who art in heaven

hallowed be Thy name,

Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done,

hallowed be Thy name. Hallowed be Thy name.

On earth as it is in heaven,

hallowed be Thy name,

give us this day our daily bread,

hallowed be Thy name. Hallowed be Thy name.

Forgive us all our trespasses,

hallowed be Thy name,

as we forgive those who trespass against us

hallowed be Thy name. Hallowed be Thy Name.

And lead us not into temptation

hallowed be Thy name,

but deliver us from all that is evil,

hallowed be Thy name. Hallowed be Thy Name.

For Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory,

hallowed be Thy name,

for ever and for ever and ever,

hallowed be Thy name. Hallowed be Thy Name.

Amen, amen, it shall be so,

hallowed be Thy name,

amen, amen, it shall be so,

hallowed be Thy name. Hallowed be Thy Name.

 

His disciples said “Lord, teach us how to pray” and now we know how to do it:

 

Our Father who art in Heaven,
Hallowed be thy name;
Thy kingdom come
Thy will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
And forgive us our trespasses
As we forgive those who trespass against us;
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.

 For thine is the kingdom

the power and the glory

For ever and ever.

Amen

Blessing and Dismissal

 

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