Visiting Speakers:
A Puppy-Walker from the Guide Dogs for the Blind

Which members of your congregation, or of your wider community, might share their gifts with you at All-Age Worship? Here is one example of a way in which such a link might be made, in order to give you a flavour of how a visiting speaker might be incorporated into the usual service.

Summary

  1. The visiting Puppy Walker introduces the puppy and explains what a guide dog is, and what will be involved in the puppy's life as a guide dog. The children are able to stroke the puppy and ask questions.
  2. The Puppy Walker, or a worship leader, talks about how the puppy's role in Puppy Walker's life - and in lots of other people's - is temporary, and how change can be sad and frightening. The idea of Jesus as our Guide is introduced.
  3. Reading: Mark 10.46-52, in which Jesus heals the blind man Bartimaeus (you could divide this short reading into five parts, which children are able to read).
  4. The leader talks about why Jesus healed Bartimaeus. He performed miracles in order to teach us about God, and this miracle shows us that He can open our eyes so that we too can follow Him.

From this you can see that it is not difficult for a visitor to make a real contribution to the Family Service, in a way that links naturally into one aspect of Christian teaching. Many members of your congregation will have gifts or life interests that could be incorporated into a service, and would probably be very pleased to be asked. Appropriate support must be offered, and no pressure exerted on people who genuinely would not feel able to take the "centre stage" in this way. For those who do feel able to accept your invitation, however, the experience can be enriching for them as well as for the rest of the congregation. Every member of the Body of Christ has a part to play, in the Family Service as well as in every other arena.



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