for the
Family Service
St. Augustine's

September 18 2005

These are notes and comments on some of the items which appear in the Family Service script. Links from the script point to these entries; clicking the links in the left hand column of the table takes you back to the corresponding link in the script  - or, where more than one link from the script points to the note, back to the first such link.

The comments are typically related to features of the service which are specific to our church or the time of the service, or which for some other reason we think might require alteration for another setting.

For references to the internal geography of the church, it might be helpful to inspect the plan.


Children's activity ready to give out, inconspicuously stored somewhere at the front.

Fruit labels at the back.

A bowl of grapes by the planter.

Presents on the Fruit Store table.

A tray of twigs ready for handing out. We kept our twigs on a small table inconspicuously placed, and convenient for moving to the altar step when required.

FURNITURE : Fruit store : Table, banner above reading "HOLY SPIRIT FRUIT STORE", presents on the table.

Grapevine : Pinned to the blue curtain behind the altar.

Planter : The planter, containing soil, stands in front of the trellis.

Trellis : At the hospital side, on the lowest step to be easily accessible from the congregation.

PEOPLE : Projector person in position before service begins.

ACTIVITY Something to occupy the children quietly during the sermon. In line with the theme of the service, we gave out a colouring-in page with pictures of a grape vine and a list of the fruit for filling in, and colouring-in pencils.
FRUIT 1, etc. This script is written for five Fruit carriers, "Fruit 1" to "Fruit 5", because that's how many we had. Any number up to nine could be used, with some making two or more visits to the front. The lower limit is set by the amount of time taken to get to the front and return to the back; if that's too long, it will slow down the presentation. The task is very easy, and this is a good way to "give everyone a part".
FRUIT LABELSEach label is a picture of a bunch of grapes with a label attached bearing the name of one of the fruits of the Spirit.
FRUIT STORE This is the focus of the Fruit Store sketch in the service. It should look plausibly like a market stall. Above it there is a banner with the text "HOLY SPIRIT FRUIT STORE", which should be clearly visible throughout the hall.

( The letters on the notice are cut out from pages of illustrations of a glossy magazine. We thought it looked rather effective. )

On the table are some presents. There should be space for someone to stand behind the table, and for three "customers" to be nearby.

GRAPES A bowl of real grapes, by the planter, from which people can take a few grapes after offering a twig.
GRAPEVINE  A "grape vine" with filmy blue material woven through it to represent the Holy Spirit. On this vine there will be fruit, blossom, immature fruit and mature fruit, also dead branches etc. ( The stem of our vine was a twisted rope; grapes were plastic; leaves and blossom were paper. ) It must be prominent, and clearly visible.
PART OF GOD Not a particularly happy phrase, but we couldn't think of anything better. "Person of God" ( or similar ) means nothing unless you know about the Trinity; other expressions we thought of all seemed to demand further explanation which we couldn't fit in without spoiling the flow. If you can do better, please do !
PLANTER In front of the trellis there is a planter containing soil. The congregation are invited to plant twigs in this during the service, so it must be easily accessible.
PRESENTSStrips of paper with the fruit listed on them and woven together to make interesting shapes.
STORIES Two true stories, around five minutes each, reinforcing the message of the service. We used personal stories, which seemed to work well. Use some of your own.
TOPICAL PRAYERS We have included some topical prayers, which would almost certainly be inappropriate in a different context. Omit them, or replace them with prayers appropriate to the time and place of your service.
TRELLIS Something like a trellis, or other sort of extended support of grapevines ( ours was stiff cardboard, visible in the bottom left corner of the "fruit store" picture above ), decorated with vine leaves and supported vertically so that the "fruit labels" can be displayed thereon.
TWIGS The twigs are intended to be symbols of potential growth and new life. Fairly bare twigs, perhaps with buds or suggestions of new leaf, are appropriate. Members of the congregation are invited to select a twig and plant it in the planter during the service, so provide enough to cater for more than the expected congregation.