Our worship idea for March is hardly new… Prayer Trees!
Lots of people use prayer trees in their churches or in worship, and our prayer trees were one of the most popular items on our stall at the Christian Resources Exhibition.Wanting to have a physical expression of our prayers is nothing new. Lighting candles is probably the most common and popular way of doing this. But candles aren’t always appropriate (or safe), or maybe we want to write something down, or just want some other kind of symbolism. Prayer trees are one way of doing this.
One person visiting our stall at the exhibition asked how he could get hold of the artwork that we had with our display tree. I said I would e-mail it to him, but then it occurred to me that we could make it more widely available via our website. Sometimes we don’t have the time (or imagination) to create our own resources, so over the years I have found it incredibly helpful to be able to use other people’s good ideas.
So below are some of our ideas for using prayer trees, a link to our shop if you want to buy a tree, and some free downloadable artwork to use with prayer trees.
Ideas for using Prayer Trees
Prayer trees can be used…
- As a permanent fixture. People can come offer prayers as and when they wish to, much like a traditional votive candle stand.
- As a prayer station. In my previous parish we had a prayer tree at our Christmas Tree Festival and Christmas Fair. People were invited to write their prayers on sparkly stars (these were inexpensive gift tags from Poundland I seem to remember) and hang them on the tree.
- As part of a particular act of worship. Last Christmas we wrote things we wanted to give thanks for on sparkly cardboard bird decorations that we found and hung them on the tree.
The picture below shows our prayer tree being used to pray for the nations, including artwork with instructions. This artwork is available to download below, along with artwork for using the trees for praying in other ways.
Resources to Purchase
Click on the following links to download artwork that can be used with prayer trees:
- For praying for the countries of the world, for use with ‘leaves’: Prayer Tree, NATIONS
- For remembering loved ones, for use with ‘flowers’. Especially suitable for Easter, All Souls etc: Prayer Tree RESURRECTION
- For praying for peace, for use with ‘doves’. Children and/or adults could make simple doves to hang on the tree: Prayer Tree PEACE
- For general use, for use with any shape: Prayer Tree GENERAL
- Sheet of leaf shapes to print and cut out: Leaves cut outs
- Sheet of flower shapes to print and cut out: Flowers cut outs
- Sheet of dove shapes to print and cut out: Doves cut outs
In light of the current situation with the spread of the Coronavirus, we have also produced the following resource: Prayer Tree CORONAVIRUS
- Instead of people adding to the tree, they could take something from it. Maybe bible promises written on the leaves.
- Make simple doves (all ages can do this!) to hang on the tree. One example can be found here.
- If you don’t want to cut out lots of shapes, then you could use parcel tags, gift tags or ready cut shapes from somewhere such as Rainbow Creations or Baker Ross.
- If you have another good idea, then why not share it in the comments below…