Children's Letters to God

My friend Meredith Gould made a wry and valid comment about my very early post on O antiphons here  My reply explained the reason for it this year, but I have noticed that it is getting more difficult to blog in exact time with the seasons.

I've noticed that some bloggers have said that it is difficult trying to find a balance between ordinary life, preparing posts and resources ahead of time and finding some personal space to be open to silence, prayer, and reflection during Advent .

It got me thinking too, of how pressed primary schoolteachers are at this time of year to get wall displays up for end of term parents evenings.   A teacher friend says it's getting more difficult to keep children's focus "on the ordinary wheel of learning " when the media is full of advertisements for Christmas even now, before Advent has even begun. Every year the restlessness and silly season of behaviour starts earlier and earlier and that's just the staff, she says.!

I wonder if many keep the tradition of writing Santa proper letters these days. Given that e.mails, twitter, facebook and text messages are more likely means by which kids communicate, does anyone know if there are any official Santa sites set up for this ?

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Keeping with tradition, my friend likes to get her class to write letters to God as well as the usual ones to Santa this time of year, to try and redress the imbalance a little. She teaches in a school with a Christian ethos but there are schools where similar exercises are controversial

Even traditional nativity plays can provoke an outcry from parents who do not wish their children to have the Christian view "imposed" on their offspring.  Many schools with multi faith kids now gladly incorporate celebration of the major festivals of all faiths during the school year, but there are some parents who are atheists and humanists who voice strong opposition to any of this.  

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The power of children’s’ imagination gives them a very rich imagery about God as the following personal letters show... These are not all related to this time of year.

¨     “Dear God, I do not think that anybody could be a better God. Well I just want you to know but I am not just saying that because you are God. Charles”

¨     “Dear God, I didn’t think orange went with purple until I saw the sunset you made on Tuesday. That was cool. Eugene”

¨     “Dear God, It is great the way you get the stars in the right places. Jeff”

¨     “Dear God, If you watch in church on Sunday I will show you my new shoes. Mickey D”

¨     “Dear God, I bet it is very hard for you to love all of everybody in the whole world. There are only four people in our family and I can never do it. Nan”
"    Dear God,What does it mean You are a Jealous God? I thought You had everything, Jane"
    "Dear God,Did you really mean "do unto others as they do unto you"? Because if you did, then I'm going to fix my brother. Darla"
¨     “Dear God, Thank you for the baby brother but what I prayed for was a puppy. Joyce”  
from Children’s Letters to God – The New Collection, compiled by Stuart Hample and Eric Marshall, Kyle Cathie Ltd., 1992

                                                  and some more here in this video

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