Faith Family Church has put together an exciting interactive production to teach children the meaning of Easter this Sunday.
The production used comedy, puppets, interactive games, prizes and a lively sermon to get the message out to hundreds of children.
“Just in terms of engaging kids interactively, we’re going to talk about how God saved us from the mess that our life was in because of sin, and He did that through Jesus,” said children’s pastor Tony Velasquez. “That’s the big story of our message this year.”
Children from kindergarten through fifth grade had the chance to see the show in the church’s Children’s Life Sanctuary. The lights were dimmed and the room – with tropical trees and animals like lions, monkeys, giraffes and hippos painted on the walls – really looked like a jungle as excited children entered.
The show started with Velasquez and Chestly Gobar joking around onstage to engage the audience, and they were soon joined by a puppet named Detective Sam. clues to a mystery concerning the meaning of Easter.
The first game played was the Easter Trivia Game. Two children played. If you answered the question correctly, you must choose a confetti-filled egg or a hard-boiled egg to smash on your opponent’s head. If you got a question wrong, you had to pick one to smash your head off. The smash itself didn’t matter, but what did matter was that the game led to the first clue: “Eggs represent life or a new beginning,” Velasquez said, noting that the clue was life.
The second game involved more questions, but this time getting the correct answer revealed puzzle pieces that formed a word puzzle when completed. The solution to the word puzzle? Love was the second clue to the mystery. The final game involved finding three letters that initially spelled “Dog”, but when rearranged, spelled “God”, which was the final clue needed to solve the mystery.
With these three clues together, Velasquez launched into an Easter sermon where he told the story of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection.
“Jesus is the answer to the mystery of Easter,” Velasquez said. “He is the one who puts all the pieces of the puzzle together.”
The entire production took months to prepare, Velasquez said during a break, as the children danced and sang in adoration to the music.
“I think the first meeting was in February,” he said. “That’s when we started doing rehearsals with our theater teams, talking about set and props.”
Easter, along with Christmas and Mother’s Day, is one of the days of the year that sees an increase in church attendance, he said. For this reason, it is important to do your best on these days.
“Some people, maybe they’re just holiday Christians,” he said. “This is our opportunity to really make Jesus shine for them.”
The church is doing everything it can to keep kids engaged and eager to come back. Ahead of this week’s service, Velasquez issued a challenge to the children: if they attended more Easter service this year than they did in 2021, he would shave his beard. Because they achieved this goal, next week one lucky child will shave the pastor’s beard in front of everyone.
The church also operates a small prize booth. Children can earn “honor money” by doing things like memorizing scriptures, going to church each week, bringing a Bible or a friend, and getting good grades on a report card. With these honor dollars, kids can buy prizes ranging from candies and bracelets to flying discs and water guns.