In preparation for this weekend’s celebration of the 4th Sunday of Easter, also known as the Good Shepherd Sunday, I thought it would be a perfect time to reflect on the Gospel readings and share it with children through a simple craft.
Through the use of simple and readily available materials that you might already have around the house, we could construct one of the early favourite images of Jesus as the Shepherd. This image is most loved by many perhaps because it shows our Saviour’s tenderness and compassion. Let us begin this simple craft that you could finish putting together with the children in less than 30 minutes.
For the materials, we will need:
– gingerbread man foam shape (or cut your own from cardboard)
– felt pieces in beige and white (or whatever colour you’d prefer)
– two cotton balls
– a bendy straw
– a pair of googly eyes
– marker, scissors, and glue
(1) Trace the shape of the gingerbread foam on the beige felt piece to use as the shepherd’s tunic. Cut out the traced pattern.
(2) Cut out two pieces from the white felt: one oval shape just slightly larger than the head of the foam, and one rectangular strip about an inch wide. Cut a slit across the upper part of the oval to fit the top of the head, and this will serve as the shepherd’s headpiece. The rectangular strip will be placed across the tunic.
(3) Glue the three pieces of clothing on the shepherd, and draw a gentle, happy face using markers. Your shepherd will now look like the one in the picture below. You may glue down the finished shepherd onto the left side of the green paper.
(4) To make the sheep, take one of the cotton balls and carefully stretch on all sides to make it fluffier. This will be the sheep’s body. Glue down the sheep’s body on the right side of the green paper, and glue the other smaller cotton ball to the left of the sheep’s body, so that it’s facing the shepherd.
(5) To finish the project, glue the bendy straw onto the shepherd’s hand to serve as his staff. Glue the googly eyes onto the sheep’s head, then draw four legs below the sheep’s body with your markers. Write down a title, like “The Good Shepherd”, especially if you are displaying the finished artwork on your art wall for all to enjoy.
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
He who is a hireling and not a shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf snatches them and scatters them.
He flees because he is a hireling and cares nothing for the sheep.
I am the good shepherd; I know my own and my own know me,
as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep.
And I have other sheep, that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will heed my voice. So there shall be one flock, one shepherd.
For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again.
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again; this charge I have received from my Father.
John 10: 11-18