Describing “Silent” Worship to Children
Race Street Meetinghouse

Awhile back I did a Godly Play story during our meeting for worship. We invited the children to say with the adults and participate in our listening to the story. After the story we had our normal 15 minutes of silent, or waiting, worship. This is a description I wrote up and used that Sunday. I borrowed some ideas from my friend Chad Stephenson who is the librarian at the San Francisco Friends School where their students have meeting for worship during the school day.

Mind you this is just one attempt and there are things missing from here that I would like to say. I tried to connect it to the language of Godly Play since that’s what our kids are most used to. In trying to write up a description I was challenged to be concrete, simple and succinct in describing worship to our children. It is a good exercise for all of us to try.

We are going to take a time of what we Quakers call “silent” worship. It is a quiet time to sit, listen and to wonder about the story.

Silent worship is one of the ways that Quakers do their work. We close our eyes and listen in the silence – this gives us time to think, pray, and hear if God wants to speak to us.

So silent worship is a very special time.

It’s okay to color or draw; and if you can write, you are welcome to do that, but we don’t want to do anything that will distract us or our neighbor from paying attention.

And if you feel like you have something you want to share, you are welcome to share a hopeful or kind word to the rest of the group.

We believe that God can speak to and through any person no matter what your age is.

Let’s enter a time of silent worship.

What might you say given this opportunity (or what do you already say every Sunday)?