Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Children's Prayers During Meals

The Armistead family taught our children a lovely blessing to sing at the dinner table. It is sung to the tune of the children's classic song, Are You Sleeping?

God our Father
God our Father
Once Again
Once Again
We bow our heads to thank you
Bow our heads to thank you
Amen
Amen

We love this blessing, and we've recently adapted it to involve younger children and guests. Instead of everyone singing each phrase twice, we sing it as an 'echo prayer'. One child leads the song, starting with the first phrase, "God our Father". The rest of the table echoes. Then the leader leads the second phrase , "once again", before waiting for the table to echo. And so forth, until the whole blessing is sung.

It's an easy way to remind our children (and ourselves) to give thanks to our Provider and Sustainer throughout the day.

4 comments:

The Noland Family said...

We do that SAME song with the girls I nanny for but the words are a little different :)

Thank you Father
Thank you Father
once again
once again
for our many blessings
for our many blessings
amen
amen

:)

Christy said...

Thanks for sharing! We've been collecting and learning new meal prayers lately. I'll add yours to our rotation. Now if I can just keep the kids from fighting over who gets to be "the leader" at each meal. Thinking of assigning days of the week to each child. ;-)

Christy said...

Sorry it took me so long to get back to you! We have these written on colored index cards on the dinner table. Most of them I collected from Jan Karon's Mitford Cookbook and Kitchen Reader (a delightful book!).

Come Lord Jesus, be our guest,
And may our meal by thee be blest.
- Attributed to Martin Luther, 1483-1546

Thank you for the world so sweet,
Thank you for the food we eat.
Thank you for the birds that sing,
Thank you God for everything.
- Author Unknown

God is great, God is good,
Let us thank him for our food.
By his hands we all are fed,
Give us, Lord, our daily bread.
In Jesus' name, amen.


For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night.
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything your goodness sends.
[We give thanks!]
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Lord, we thank you for the richness of this life and our friendships, and for this bountiful food. Please bless the hands that prepared it, and make us ever mindful of the needs of others, through Christ our Lord, amen.
- adapted from Father Tim in The Mitford Series, by Jan Karon

Lord, in a world where many are lonely,
we thank you for our friendships.
In a world where many are captive,
we thank you for our freedom.
In a world where many are hungry,
we thank you for our provisions.
We pray that you will enlarge our sympathy, deepen our compassion, and give us grateful hearts.
In Christ's name, Amen.
- Terry Waite

Katie Watkins said...

We do this prayer in the preschool class I teach at daycare. We do it a little differently though.

God our father
God our father
Once again
Once again
Thank you for this blessing
Thank you for this blessing
Amen
Amen