Tag Archives: Baptism

The Ethiopian Eunuch

WATCH and WONDER

Acts 8:26-40 as told by Casey FitzGerald

 

A shorter TALE

This is a longer story. You might want to start out with a smaller chunk of it to learn (especially any younger storytellers out there). Consider learning only this section: 

As they were going along the road, they came to some water;
and the eunuch said,
“Look! Water! What would keep me from being baptized?”

He commanded the chariot to stop,
and both of them, Philip and the eunuch,
went down into the water,
and Philip baptized him.

When they came up out of the water,
the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away;
the eunuch never saw him again,
but went on his way rejoicing.

Here is a copy of the entire story Acts 8: 26-40!

Ways to Wonder

For all ages:

*Once More, with Feeling! Using either the “shorter tale” or the whole text, play this game of “emotional” telling. A sentence or a section at a time, tell the story with the emotion chosen by the spinner (link to spinner here: Once More, with FEELING!). Just click on the spinner and you’re emotion will be chosen for you! This is a fun activity to do for a group re-around (each person spins and then reads). Add another layer–at the end of the telling, have the group guess what feelings were being portrayed! If you are having a tough time understanding the emotion of a part of your story, this is a great way to explore the possibilities.

*When Philip asks the Ethiopian eunuch if he understands what he’s reading from Isaiah, the eunuch replies, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” Tell a story about someone who guides you.

*The Ethiopian eunuch is an outsider, in his baptism he becomes an insider–he is now a part of the followers of Christ! As a way of connecting to the story, tell a story about a time you felt like an outsider (or a time you experienced becoming an insider).

For the younger set:

*Find a doll and some water. Pretend you are Philip and baptize the doll. (The man in our story was not a baby, so you don’t have to use a baby doll.) Do you remember how your pastor baptizes babies? What words are said? Describe what baptism looks like in your church.

the more you know…

*Though the Ethiopian eunuch held a high rank within the queen’s court, because he was considered “half man,” it is unlikely that he was actually allowed full worshipping rights in Jerusalem. Deuteronomy 23:1 tells us that such a man would be unable to enter “the assembly of the Lord.” He was, in many ways, an outsider. What does this story show us about what God is doing in the world?ethiopian

*I believe I pronounced “Candace” wrong in the video! DOH! I used my American way of saying “Candace” because it is such a familiar name. The correct pronunciation is kan-DAY-see.Here is a great place to check on your pronunciations!  (I posted this video despite the error–there will always be changes I want to make to my stories–because I am always learning! I am actually working on learning this story for an event six months from now…there will be many changes between now and then!)

Click here for more on telling this story!

Jesus Gets Baptized!

Ready to start telling the scriptures by heart in 2015? The story of Jesus’ baptism from Mark is a wonderful place to start! A re-post from 2014…

WATCH AND WONDER

Hear the story of John the Baptist and Jesus as it unfolds in Mark.
Watch the images–they’ll be useful as you learn to tell the story!

Mark 1:1-11

 

WONDER WORDS

A brief pitstop to help before you get to story-learning

REPENTANCE The story tells us John was “proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.” To repent is to TURN AROUND. You may have noticed that when “repentance” came up in the video, this image appeared: Repent turn around
When they repented, they turned around–and they turned toward God. They turned towards God’s love and forgiveness. That IS good news!

CONFESSING To confess is to admit the truth (to tell the truth).  When we confess to God, we admit things to God. Of course, God already knows all about us, but telling God is part of how we show God we care and that we want to do better. Confessing is easier when we remember that God always forgives. The next time you pray, what might you tell God?

Learn it BY HEART

Ideas to get you started in your story learning journey

1. Read the story out loud. Here is a written version of the story: Mark 1 1 to 11 NRSV
      If there is more than one of you, you could also pass the story around, reading one sentence or paragraph per person.

2.Watch the video again.

3. Using the images from the video (click here: Mark 1 video images), try to retell the story as best as you are able. Don’t worry about getting all the words right–it’s more important to get the ideas right in the beginning!

4. Think you’ve got it? Watch the video–but MUTE it! See if you can remember the parts of the story.

WAYS to WONDER

Go deeper in your understanding of the story through play, personal storytelling, and reflection.

For all ages:

1. Using not just your mind, but your whole body, imagine what it would be like to see a dove coming down from heaven. Now imagine what it would be like to eat locusts with honey.   😉

2. Tell a story of baptism.

Keys to telling your story:
Where were you? (Consider the sights, smells, sounds, etc.)
Who was there?
What were you (or others) feeling at the time? Thinking? Has that changed over time?
What actions occurred?
Did you have a sense of God in the moment? Has that changed over time?
If you have pictures of the baptismal day, take this opportunity to look at them!

 

3. Google it! There many ways people are baptized. Google images of baptism to learn more about how baptism is practiced throughout the world.

For the older set:

In part, Jesus’ baptism was his inaugural event. It was a preparatory event. How did it prepare him for what was to come? How might Jesus have felt in that baptismal moment?

Remembering that the Spirit will immediately drive him into the wilderness–remembering the whole story of Christ’s life to come–tell Jesus’ baptism portion again. Imagine you are Jesus witnessing the dove’s descent and hearing the words of God’s love. What might/does it feel like to be so loved?

Even (perhaps especially) in our adulthood, it is easy to lose sight of this belovedness. If this is the case for you, perhaps you can receive this story as a gift and reminder of your own belovedness.

Witness the dove descending and hear the voice from heaven:

“You are my child, whom I love;
          with you I am well pleased.”
 

There is always more to tell…for background on how I made some of my decisions for telling (and things to consider as you develop your own way of telling) click MARK 1 More to tell.