Sermon on the Sidewalk

Colorful real-life stories of kids, family and an extraordinarily ordinary, everyday kind of faith.

Too many children go straight from the Palm Sunday parade to the Easter alleluias and totally miss what happened in between. They are conspicuously absent from Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and the Easter Vigil. So, they miss exploring the key stories of the faith on the nights when those stories have the most power. It does not have to be that way. — Carolyn

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Passports are fun. Our kids had traveler’s passports and National Parks program passports and the novelty of filling them with stamps and stickers never grew old. I’ve also given children and youth pretend passports to help get them excited about special events, steps for completing a project or as a way to collect memories.

Inspired by Carolyn’s blog and Worshiping With Children Facebook page, along with a suggestion from one of the pastors, this year I created a Holy Week Passport, inviting kids and families to participate in all of the Holy Week experience.

ECLC’s Holy Week Passport includes scripture references for each of the special days, and since our worship services are uniquely designed to be interactive and child-friendly, the stickers will actually mean something.

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The 8-page passports were so popular at the Palm Sunday Fair we nearly ran out of books and Polaroid film for the photos, even during spring break. My real hope, of course, is that the passport stickers at the Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Saturday Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday services are equally as popular.

The Palm Sunday Fair activities were great fun, with stickers for communion bread baking, palm cross folding and cross beading, labyrinth walking, resurrection eggs, sacrifice beans, a food drive and poetry party, but the best learning will happen during Holy Week services. Those are the stickers we’re hoping kids’ take home.

IMG_2787 I’m attaching a modified PDF passport template for 2014, though there are many other excellent ideas on Pinterest and elsewhere for creating your own kids passports. Also, here is a holy week passport sticker PDF using Dan Erlander’s free artwork (see the link below for more great illustrations). Additional stickers were created using photographs specific to planned activities/events.

I’ve edited out our church name, Palm Sunday Fair events and 2013 worship service times, and also added in 2014 dates so you can pretty much print, cut and assemble if you like. To keep the passports more authentically sized we trimmed them on the margins. The passport stickers were printed on Avery 1-1/2″ round #8293 and the cover on recycled card stock paper.

Because the cover is a big part of what makes the passports so awesome, you should know the design is borrowed from Dan Erlander’s free downloadable artworkΒ and his copyright is printed on the back outside cover. During Lent we’ve been following his Manna and Mercy book, so it is a perfect fit.

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72 Responses to “Holy Week Passports for Kids and Families”

    • Marti

      I love this idea and am using this for our homeschool during holy week. Am I able to get the stickers for the passport in a pdf file or direction to where to purchase. Thank you!

      Reply
      • Dorena

        I would love it if you would send me a copy of β€œHoly Week Passports for Kids and Families” It sounds like a great lent idea.

      • sermononthesidewalk

        Hi Dorena, I am so sorry. For some reason the 2014 Passport Template unlinked from my dropbox. I have reconnected the link. Please let me know if you have any more trouble and I’ll send you the link directly. Grace, Kelly

      • sermononthesidewalk

        Hi Marti, I’ve been unable to find the original sticker file to share, but am working on it! I’ll post a PDF, along with label information, as soon as I find it or make new stickers before Palm Sunday. Thank you for your patience πŸ™‚

    • Peta

      Hi Kelly, This is a wonderful resource you have created. Will you be doing a PDF for Holy week 2015? If so I would love a copy.

      Reply
      • sermononthesidewalk

        thank you, peta! i do plan to update the passports for 2015, but with the addition of 12 prayer stations. hopefully i can get these created and posted as a PDF in time for others to use πŸ™‚

  1. Sabrina

    great idea! i’ve used passports for VBS and youth ministry and I love this application as well. would love to have the template: ladypreacher95@aol.com thank you for sharing this!

    Reply
  2. Kristi Button

    What a fabulous idea! I struggle with the Palm to Easter and children every year. I am a huge advocate on involving children in the entire week! My now 9 year old fell asleep at Good Friday service every year until last year, but he experienced the mood of it and part of it every single year….and I would not have had it any other way! Please email me your template. I am also the DCE at the church so am ready to add this next year!

    Reply
  3. Christina

    I would love a copy. I’ll use it for next year. πŸ™‚ What a neat idea.

    Reply
  4. Jaymie Derden

    LOVE this idea! We are trying to include children and families in several Holy Week activities this year. We’re baking Communion bread Thursday afternoon and asking kids to help “strip” the altar at the service.

    I would love to have a copy of your passport. Thanks so much!

    jderden@chartertn.net

    Reply
  5. deliahalverson

    thank you. I sent this link on to my email listing of lots of Christian ed folks, some in children’s ministry and others. I know it will help them. I also signed up to follow you.

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Hi Erica! I’ve actually added the link right on the blog now, so all you need to do is click on it and it will take you to a dropbox where you can print an edited 2014 Holy Week Passport πŸ™‚ Blessings! Kelly

      Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Hi Hannah! I’ve actually added the link right on the blog now, so all you need to do is click on it and it will take you to a dropbox where you can print an edited 2014 Holy Week Passport. Let me know if it isn’t working and I’ll send you a dropbox link. Blessings! Kelly

      Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Hi Nicole, I am so sorry. For some reason the 2014 Passport Template unlinked from my dropbox. I have reconnected the link. Please let me know if you have any more trouble and I’ll send you the link directly. Grace, Kelly

      Reply
  6. Lindsey Wade

    I’d love to hear what the kids do/experience during the rest of Lent that they use their passports for. Thanks-I love your blog!

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Thank you, Lindsey! So far we have only used the passports during Holy Week (the link has been fixed and should work now), but we do many other activities throughout Lent. I’m hoping to begin blogging some of these ideas more regularly in the next couple of weeks. It may not be helpful for you this year, but thank you for checking back πŸ™‚ Grateful, Kelly

      Reply
  7. Elizabeth Padilla

    I would love it too, it would be great for my class

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      The link for the 2014 Passport template should be working now. If not, please let me know and I’ll send it directly. I have been unable to find the original sticker file to share, but am working on it! I’ll post a PDF, along with label information, as soon as I find it or make new stickers before Palm Sunday. Thank you for your patience πŸ™‚

      Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Hi Danielle, I am so sorry. For some reason the 2014 Passport Template unlinked from my dropbox. I have reconnected the link. Please let me know if you have any more trouble and I’ll send you the link directly. Grace, Kelly

      Reply
  8. Pamela Johnston

    Kelly, I would love to use a version of this for our children at Mulberry St UMC. The link to the template does not work for me, so I was wondering if you could send it to me in an e-mail? You are so creative!

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Hi Pamela, Thank you! I am so sorry. For some reason the 2014 Passport Template unlinked from my dropbox. I have reconnected the link. Please let me know if you have any more trouble and I’ll send you the link directly. Grace, Kelly

      Reply
  9. Kari Webber

    Question… I click on the link for the 2014 Passport Template, but Dropbox keeps telling me that the file is empty…. Am I crazy? Am I missing it somewhere else? I’d love to use this with my Sunday School students. Thank you!

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Hi Kari, I am so sorry. For some reason the 2014 Passport Template unlinked from my dropbox. I have reconnected the link. Please let me know if you have any more trouble and I’ll send you the link directly. Grace, Kelly

      Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Thank you, Jenny! You are welcome to click on the links, download and print passport books and sticker templates at your convenience πŸ™‚ Blessings! Kelly πŸ™‚

      Reply
  10. Martha Sloan

    What a wonderful idea to share your idea with others. We would like to use it for our upcoming Lenten Fair for all ages. What did you use for stickers or stamps? That is the problem I am having to make the best use of the passports.
    Thanks!!!

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Thank you for asking, and for being persistent πŸ™‚ After looking everywhere I was unable to find the original sticker template, so I finally re-created one sheet of stickers to get people started (the Erlander illustrations can be found on the blog link). I’ll add a link to the PDF file right away! All stickers were printed on Avery labels #8293 (20- 1-1/2″ labels per sheet), one sticker per Holy Week activity/event. Grace and peace, Kelly πŸ™‚

      Reply
      • Martha Sloan

        I did not see it on the blog site. Am I looking in the wrong spot?

      • sermononthesidewalk

        The PDF links for both the passport book and 4 sticker pages is in the paragraph following the picture of the passport sticker book. If you click on these links the PDF files should open for downloading and printing. I’m sorry you’re having a hard time!

  11. kmsturgill

    Kelly, I know a bunch of people have already asked you for templates of the stickers, but I can’t find them on the blog. If you could tell me where to look or send them to my email address, I would love to use them. Thank you!

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Thank you for asking, and for being persistent πŸ™‚ After looking everywhere I was unable to find the original sticker template, so I finally re-created one sheet of stickers to get people started (the Erlander illustrations can be found on the blog link). I’ll add a link to the PDF file right away! All stickers were printed on Avery labels #8293 (20- 1-1/2β€³ labels per sheet), one sticker per Holy Week activity/event. Grace and peace, Kelly πŸ™‚

      Reply
  12. sermononthesidewalk

    To everyone waiting on stickers, I am sorry it took so long long! I had no idea so many people would be asking for them. As of today you will find a Holy Week sticker PDF link you can click on, download and print on Avery labels #8293 (20- 1/1’2″ labels per sheet). Thank you for being patient as I figure out just how awesome blogging can be for sharing real resources. Grace and Peace! Kelly πŸ™‚

    Reply
  13. kmsturgill

    I have one more question – is there an editable version of the passport PDFs? I want to add specific church events and times but can’t do so in the current format. I’m already very appreciate of you providing this resource in the first place, so if I’m asking too much, please don’t hesitate to say so.

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      Thank you for asking. To create additional labels you can use the same Avery template I used for 20- 1-1/2 labels per page. When you buy the labels there are directions for how to do this. It’s not difficult at all πŸ™‚

      Reply
      • kmsturgill

        I meant to ask about the actual passport pages, especially the cover. For example, we don’t have an Easter Vigil, but will be doing an Easter Egg Hunt and Flower Cross. I’d like to be able to add the times of those events and our services if at all possible. If not, that’s okay, though.

      • sermononthesidewalk

        Thank you for asking, and for your patience! I’m looking into different ways to share files. For now PDF files are all I know how to share via the WordPress platform. Grace and peace, Kelly πŸ™‚

  14. Jen Smith

    Kelly, thank you! We’ll be using Holy Week passports in the coming week here in Singapore. A great idea that is traveling around the world! We’ll introduce it in the children’s sermon this week, make them in SS class, and next week the Sr Pastor will have a special message for the children incorporating the passports. For those outside the US, Avery L3415 40mm round stickers (24 per sheet) work just fine with the pages template. Thanks again. Have a blessed Holy Week!

    Reply
  15. mylineofsight

    Kelly, thank you! Just wanted to let you know we’ll be using Holy Week passports in the coming week here in Singapore. A great idea that is traveling around the world! We’ll introduce it in the children’s sermon this Sunday, assemble the passports in SS class after, and have a special children’s sermon for Easter Sunday to mark the journey. For those outside the US who have trouble getting the right labels, Avery L3415 40mm work just fine! Thanks again. Have a blessed Holy Week.

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      This is awesome, Jen! I’m so glad you shared how you’ll be using Holy Week passports in Singapore… and also for label helps for our friends outside the US. Hosanna! Kelly πŸ™‚

      Reply
  16. Susan M.

    These are wonderful! Will you be updating the file for the 2015 journey? I would love to use them in my Kindergarten classroom (private school)? (I came across your page via Pinterest.)

    Reply
    • sermononthesidewalk

      thank you, susan! i do plan to update the passports for 2015, but with the addition of 12 prayer stations. hopefully i can get these created and posted soon so they can be shared πŸ™‚

      Reply

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