Creative ways of celebrating and marking endings...

  • treeCreate a memory tree on canvas to present to someone (see examples) using sharpie pens or paints with a special bible text woven into the tree branches or foreground, and using fingerprints of the church family/youth group or whatever is appropriate to be the fruit/leaves on the tree, which is a sign of the relationships made and the ongoing impact of those connections from the ministry completed in that place. It doesn’t mean the relationships are ending or that they will continue the same – just that they are rooted/connected in some way. This is particularly good for groups/congregations with younger children too as they can leave their little fingerprints on the tree and it can be beautiful to see the different sizes of prints.
  • Create large music sheets (about 6 x 4 feet), where folk put a fingerprint on the music sheet and then one of the musicians connects the notes in a variety of beats and puts them into bars. They then play the music as a ‘special peace’ – a memory of celebration and joy.  This can be great for a congregation coming to an end – a reminder of what they share together and individually what they contribute – even though the building may not be the same place they meet.
  • Capturing video pieces from those who have worked with or have key memories of a person (could be done live too) to share the impact that person’s ministry has had – however long it has been. Similarly, if it’s a group leader (children pastor, youth leader, pioneer, etc) take pictures of each person associated with the group/congregation and create a video/presentation with music as a reflection to share with all.

Lorraine Darlow, Learning Networktree-2