Dickinson College Humanities Program in Norwich

Easter with Strangers

May 3, 2011 · No Comments

My first day at the Cathedral (not in my official capacity of greeter), involved working with local children during an open day full of Easter activities.  I started by helping groups of kids make Easter baskets that they would later use to collect chocolate eggs in the herb garden.  I really enjoyed the experience for two reasons.  First, I love kids.  They crack me up and these were no exception.  Second, I love Easter.  This is the first year I have not celebrated Easter with either my family or friends.  At home we typically make a big to do about it – we go to church in the mornings, dye Easter eggs in the days leading up to Easter Sunday, and have what can only be described as epic Easter Baskets.   At Dickinson I get two Easters.  I celebrate one with my close friends (this typically involves eggs, baskets, and a home made brunch) and with the family I nanny for (Isabel, the little girl I watch, starts celebrating Easter weeks in advance with daily egg hunts).  I was a little disappointed to know that this year I would probably go to mass on my own and then come back to UEA.  Thus, being at the Cathedral and celebrating it with a multitude of very excited children absolutely made my day.

A few days before my morning at the Cathedral, Juliet Corbett had emailed me and asked if I minded doing something separate from my Dickinson colleagues.  She asked if I would work at the Garden of Gethsemane station where I would give a short speech to the children and then help them make clay models of what made them feel afraid.  The speech I gave discussed how Jesus must have felt alone and afraid in the Garden of Gethsemane when the disciples fell asleep the night he was arrested.  I was then supposed to ask the kids to tell me what made them feel afraid.  I had forgotten how original young children could be and I got answers ranging from spiders and school bullies to sausages.  What is scary about a sausage is beyond me, but it definitely made me smile.  By the time I closed up my station, even though it was not quite Easter and I was with total strangers, I felt like I had been party of a family celebration.

After everything was tidied up all of the volunteers for the day met with Juliet to talk about what we felt went well and what we thought could use improvement.  While I did not have any suggestions (I felt like the day had gone smoothly and that the kids seemed really happy), the open forum truly made me feel like part of the Cathedral community.  Even though there was a range of people we all had this common ground: we were there because we enjoyed the Cathedral community and spending time with children.

Date: 13 April 2011

Time: 10am-3pm

Hours: 5 / Total: 5

Supervisor:  Juliet Corbett

Categories: 2010 Amy · Churches and Cathedrals

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