Pentecost is one of our greatest feasts. Preschoolers may have difficulty understanding the meaning of this scripture story because the concept of the Holy Spirit is quite abstract. However, they can develop an understanding on an intuitive level. The story is filled with sensory experiences and action, which is exactly how young children learn. Introduce them to this important scripture by using their delight in their senses and movements.

The actual Pentecost of scripture was a noisy event, much of which took place outside. If possible, take your class outside or to a large space such as a gym, for your celebration too will be best celebrated in a large space!

Tell the story below, encouraging children to help you with the actions suggested.

[Introduction]

Today I will tell you an important story from Holy Scripture, and I want you to help me. You will get to run sometimes and make noises. But you must also be good listeners. When I clap my hands three times, you must stop and come back to me so you can hear the next part of the story.

[Story] Wind, Fire and Holy Spirit

Before Jesus went back to heaven, he told his friends that the Holy Spirit would come to them and then they would become great teachers.

Lead the children in this song, sung to the tune of ‘Frere Jacques’:

Holy Spirit!

Holy Spirit!

Come to us!

Come to us!

Send your wind and fire,

Send your wind and fire!

Come to us!

Come to us!

A few days later, when Jesus was gone from them, it was the time of Pentecost, a celebration for the Jewish people. Jesus’ friends and his mother were all together in one room.

Encourage children to huddle together. Clap your hands three times.

Suddenly there came a noise. It seemed to come from the sky.

All look up.

It sounded like a strong, driving wind. It filled the whole house!

Have children now be the wind, running, arms flapping, and making wind noises by blowing air through pursed lips. Clap three times.

Then they saw something amazing! Little bits of fire appeared in the air above their heads! These bits of fire came to rest on each one of them but these fires did not burn them at all!

Have children be the bits of fire, starting out tall, as if they are in the air, then slowly come down and settle on the floor, pretending they have landed gently on a person. Clap three times.

Now let’s imagine you are the people again. All of this wind and fire meant Jesus’ friends and mother, Mary, were filled with the Holy Spirit. It was Jesus’ promise to them! They felt full of joy! And they were joyful because of Jesus!

They wanted to tell everyone they saw that Jesus loves us!

They wanted to tell everyone they saw that Jesus says, “Let’s not fight!”

They wanted to tell everyone they saw that Jesus said, “Let’s love each other and help each other!”

So that is what they did.

Have children walk around and tell each other about Jesus in an excited way. Clap three times.

The next action be will be final one and will be a good one to end the session.

That great day, many, many people learned about Jesus because of his excited friends. 

Now let’s celebrate this great day.

Give each child streamers of red and orange ribbons or crepe paper. Remind them of the wind in the story and have them run to celebrate and get the streamers to flutter.

If you must gather the children again, call them to sing the Holy Spirit song.

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