Sermons for Librarians

Some of my favourite stories about the power of one person to change the world.

As a teacher-librarian, I have always chosen books with messages to share with children. Social responsibility, empathy, environmental stewardship and self-awareness are important lessons to be taught to children. And to adults....

This summer, our minister is using picture books to teach rather than delivering a sermon based on the Bible text reading.

The first story was The Lorax by Dr. Seuss.

Few people attend Sunday services at our neighbourhood church but 150 meals are served each Thursday, money is raised to share with the community and there are book clubs and coffee groups 
where neighbours meet and create relationships.

The second story was The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde.

When I was a girl, I attended Sunday School in a hall next door to the church. Children did not attend services in the church except on special occasions. As there were many children, we were arranged 
in age groups for a lesson and then we had "open session" with singing. We had "memory verses"
and recitations. I won an autograph book for learning the most memory verses. When I was 12, I was allowed to quit. It all seemed irrelevant to me at that time.

There are many seed stories in the New Testament.

Only a few children attend our church with their parents. They are encouraged to interact with the Minister at a "learning time" and then they leave for an art activity that is related to the theme of the day. There are percussion instruments for them to use during hymns!!! Little girls often come in their
Disney dresses. A far cry from the prim Sunday outfits of the 1950's when I grew up. The children have fun at church.

Today's book will be I am Human by Susan Verde

I've really enjoyed our four weeks of stories. I've always believed that the Bible is a teaching tool just
as the stories that I have shared with children. The stories were told in the language and the manner
appropriate to the times that they were written. Good stories last over time and themes are timeless.

Our minister is travelling to Northern Ireland next month to attend  a workshop at the Corrymeela
Centre for Peace. She will be learning about narrative from Padraig O Tuama, a theologian and poet who has worked to promote peace in the world. I hope that she comes back with some new ways to
tell old stories or some new stories to teach old lessons.  I'm volunteering at Spirit Camp for a day in August because I feel that I can help the world by helping children have fun while they are learning about community, empathy and peace.

For 50 years, Corrymeela has been a place of story. We have been a gathering place where people from many sides of conflict and division have shared their story. While for many years we held much of this work quietly, we now offer training courses on using narrative practice in your personal, community and professional life.


  1. I really loved Sunday school when I was a kid. They used to use felt boards to bring a story to life. I loved those. I always loved that story by Oscar Wilde, too. Happy, blessed Sunday- xo Diana

    1. Felt board stories have always interested me. It's funny that no one had any teaching ideas at Sunday School when I was young. A felt board story, a puppet show or a craft would have brought the stories alive.

  2. What a wonderful idea to use the children's books. I remember when a local pastor used a movie each week during the summer as a springboard for his sermon and it really connected with young adults especially.

    1. It is important to make the message clear and enjoyable to younger people.

  3. I love the "Lorax" - great idea to share with kids books that uplift, etc.

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