In the early chapters of Mark’s gospel, there are several stories about Jesus healing people. Here are some of the activities we used to help children explore what it would have been like for those people.
Mark 1: 29-39: Jesus heals Simon’s mother-in-law
In this story Jesus heals many people, including Simon (Peter)’s mother-in-law, who was sick in bed just when Jesus and his mates rocked up on her doorstep expecting hospitality. I wonder why Jesus chose to heal her? Later in the story Jesus takes himself off to a quiet place for some solitude, to pray and be refreshed ready for the day ahead. Note the reaction of his disciples, almost accusing him when they thought he should be at everyone’s beck and call. How might this part of the story be relevant to us today?
Click here to find a craft to help Simon’s mother-in-law get off her sick bed.
Mark 1: 40-45: Jesus heals a man with leprosy
Leprosy was a nasty skin disease for which there was no cure. Anyone with leprosy was considered unclean and had to remove themselves completely from society so they could not infect anyone else. If they were cured, they had to show themselves to the religious authorities to be properly certified as cured, and to get permission to re-enter society.
Talk with your children about what it would feel like to be forbidden to live with their family, not allowed to see their friends, unable to go to school or to get a job, and to have to shout “Unclean!” if anyone came near them. Imagine what it would feel like to be freed from that way of living – like being brought back to life.
Activity: Make a puppet to help retell the story. A leper healed craft