Celebrating Holy Week With Kids

by Christine Sine

This page is out of date. Please see our updated Celebrating Holy Week with Kids.

Easter Sunday is the central celebration of our faith yet, I struggle more and more because it seems to me that what begins with triumphant shouts of Christ is Risen Alleluiah, and a beautiful flowering of the cross ends with an easter egg hunt.

“It’s great to see the kids so enthusiastic,” people tell me, but is it really? Is an enthusiastic sugar high really a substitute for celebrating the resurrection of Christ? Have we bought into the secular culture so much that we can no longer tell the difference?

Others struggle too. The values emphasized in the easter egg hunt are counter to kingdom values – greed, individualism and competitiveness drive kids to find more candy not to share, but for themselves. And what about the symbolism?

The Easter Bunny is a rabbit-spirit. Long ago, he was called the “Easter Hare”, hares and rabbits have frequent multiple births so they became a symbol of fertility. The custom of an Easter egg hunt began because children believed that hares laid eggs in the grass. The Romans believed that “All life comes from an egg.” Christians too, consider eggs to be “the seed of life” and so they are symbolic of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Why we colour and decorate eggs is not certain but in ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome and Persia eggs were dyed for spring festivals as a sign of fertility.

Now I am all for taking the symbols of the culture and transforming them into the symbols of our faith, but I wonder have we transformed this symbol or has it transformed us? Are our values and our joy in the resurrection of Christ subverted by the secular culture that is all into greed, consumption and competitiveness? Do we miss out on the life that the season is meant to renew in us because we are caught up in another world view?

Having said all that, I think that Holy Week and Easter Sunday in particular should be a wonderful celebration of life and faith for adults and kids. Here are some resources you might like to check out.

I add new resources to my Pinterest boards Lent and Easter with Kids and Prayer Stations with Kids on a regular basis so you might also like to check this out.

Most of the ideas below are easy to do at home, great for celebrating in 20201!

Looking for Crafts? 

This tin foil cross craft is also a creative project that I think would appeal to kids and adults alike.

Want to do some Easter Gardening?

Looking for Recipes?

Looking for Videos?

Share this with your kids.

Or if your kids are LEGO enthusiasts, this is the video for you;

Or this one:

This is part of this series on Resources for Holy Week. Here are all the posts:

Please check out our complete list of Godspace resources for Lent through Holy Week

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Michael Moore March 25, 2015 - 5:15 pm

Yes… It dismays me how so many are more interested in the eggs and food…

Christine Sine March 25, 2015 - 5:29 pm

I wish we could find some creative ways to change this

» Celebrating Holy Week With Kids – Resources for 2015 March 25, 2015 - 7:24 pm

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Angelika March 29, 2015 - 4:42 am

why plan craft activities with children involving symbols of torture?

Christine Sine March 29, 2015 - 6:18 am

Angelika, Holy week is about death and resurrection and I think that we need both emphases for kids and adults to help them understand

Linda March 31, 2015 - 2:54 am

Angelika, I would ask, “Why not”? If you are a Christian, you believe that these things happened and you want your children, to grow up knowing and understanding how wonderful these ‘symbols of torture’ actually are and what they represent for each and every one of us. They don’t need hiding, they need celebrating.

Christine Sine March 31, 2015 - 6:22 am

Thanks Phipin. One thing that does occur to me as I contemplate this is that we do tend to place more emphasis on the cross than on the new kingdom that Christ’s sacrifice was giving birth too. Evidently in early church art the cross was not at the centre, the kingdom of God was. The cross was seen as a means to an end rather than the end itself. Yes we need to celebrate the cross but even more we need to celebrate the kingdom

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