Use this meaningful Advent Outreach: Christmas Cradle Prayers with kids in your church.
Truth: Prayer can lead us to acts of service during the Christmas holiday.
Make a manger from a wooden or cardboard box. Fill it with hay or shredded paper.
On the first Sunday of Advent, gather kids around the empty manger. Talk about what people do to get ready when a baby is about to be born. Ask kids to bring a small baby gift each week until Christmas. Suggest small items such as pacifiers, knit booties, bibs, rattles, bottles, or cans of formula.
Let children lay their Christmas gifts in the manger each week. Seeing familiar baby items will help kids grasp the reality of Jesus’ birth. Each week ask a different child to offer a prayer and thank Jesus for coming to the earth as a baby. On the Sunday before Christmas, pack all the baby items in a box, and have the kids wrap and decorate it. Lead the children in a prayer for those who will receive the gifts.
Take the box to a local shelter. If possible, have the children go with you when you make the special Christmas delivery.