Prepping for a series of assemblies at one of the secondary schools I am linked with, with the theme of "Hope".
Remit is 2 classes of young people, for about 15 minutes. Numbers are for references to slides/visuals/transitions used.
Feel free to "borrow" any ideas, and let me know how you get on...
NOTE: This is for a church school. Even then I am careful about how I present Christianity. Be sensible with what you say when you do assemblies ANYWHERE! You're entrusted with a privileged position and you represent us all...
1: Discuss with the person next to you: What is Hope? What gives you Hope? (FEEDBACK)
2: “Hope is not pretending that troubles don’t exist. It is the belief that they won’t last forever; that hurts will be healed; that difficulties can be overcome; that we will be led out of darkness and into the light”
It’s not pretending that this assembly doesn’t exist, or that it isn’t painful, it’s believing that break-time isn’t far away.
3: Discuss with the person next to you: Do you have a song/colour/smell/whatever, that always makes you believe there’s something better to come?
For me the list includes:
The smell of bacon cooking… Good things coming my way!
Sky blue… because maybe the sun is breaking through the clouds too…
Bill Withers: Lovely Day…
“Then I look at you, and the world’s alright with me…” (SING IT!)
Or Elbow: One Day like This -
“Throw those curtains wide, one day like this a year will see me right”
4: Anyone recognise this logo? (Superman’s “S”)
What does it say to you? What does it mean?
It is an S for superman, but let’s get our geek on for a bit… It’s actually the Kryptonian symbol for 2 things: “Hope” and “Stronger Together.” Superman is in himself the embodiment of hope, of the promise that things will get better.
RHETORICAL: What gives us that hope?
Shawshank Redemption: 500 yards of toilet waste for freedom… (Tell DON’T SHOW! 15+... Old school, but reference Stephen King as writer as they will have heard of "IT" recently)
He had to go through the unpleasant because he believed there was something better at the other end of the waste-pipe… Freedom!
What gives you that Hope?
5: In one stream of comics, Superboy (test tube baby of Superman and Lex Luthor) dies. Shortly after, there is a cult started and their logo is the Superman “S” turned upside down. Turned upside down it means “Resurrection”… Even in death, even when things are as bad as they can get, hope is still there. Resurrection is the promise of new life to come.
The Christian story holds that very promise when we get to the Easter story…
6: Let’s get even geekier, because I’m 100% sure you’ve all heard of superman, I’m sure some of you have heard of Superboy, and while some of you will have seen the questionable movie with Ryan Reynolds about the Green Lantern, I wonder if any of you have ever heard of the Blue Lanterns?
All the lanterns have power rings that are powered by emotions. The Greens are powered by willpower, yellow - fear, red - anger, etc.
Blue is the colour of Hope. They get their power from the belief that there is something better promised. They’re motto is this:
"In fearful day, in raging night,
With strong hearts full, our souls ignite.
When all seems lost in the War of Light,
Look to the stars, for hope burns bright!"
They find their hope in the stars, where there is always light in the darkness. Where do you find yours?
In reality, Hope is useless unless it’s an acted on belief.
7: Imagine someone gave you a cheque for £500. It was yours, and in your hand. You have to believe that it is worth the money, that it will become your money. But unless you take it to the bank and cash it, it’s just a piece of paper and it’s useless…
For Christians it is one thing to say we believe there is more to this world than what is around us, it is not just about believing there will be a light that comes to eradicate the dark places in society (pain, injustice, etc), rather it is about us becoming the light and living in such a way as to see the hope become a reality.
9: “Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today”
We need to bring that hope to other people, just as we can find it in God. Where people find themselves in trouble, in pain, in sorrow and grief, we can be a light in their darkness.
10: What gives you hope? How can you give hope to others?
Remarcable is one man blogging about Youth Work, Theology, Family, Life and those other random things that come to mind.