Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Jesse Tree Assignment

Jesse Tree Ornament Instructions

To make the Jesse Tree ornaments you will need: glue; ribbon or yarn (preferably purple); and crayons, markers, paints or colored pencils, and cardboard stock to create paper background for the ornaments. The ornaments may be decorated with bits and pieces of bright colored paper, cloth, wood, plastic, etc., that you may find around your home or school. You will also need a Bible.

Step 1 - Read your Bible passage
Step 2 - Retell it in your own words.
Step 3 - Jot note the Who, What, Where, When, Why and How???? (if you can answer all of these) for the passage.
Step 4 - Write 15 "Gist" words - Sum up the passage in 15 key words...
Step 5 - Put this in your own words... written with proper grammar
Step 6 - Decide on an appropriate symbol, Sketch it...
Step 7 - Explain why this symbol fits your ancestor of Jesus and the passage from the Bible you were given
Step 8 - Finish off the symbol
Step 9 - On the front of the decoration - paste and decorate the symbol; on the back, place the summary of the passage (typed - you may have to type using 8 pt font.)
Decorations should be at least 12-15 cm diameters across...

Abraham - Genesis 12.1-3
Sarah - Genesis 18.6-15
Moses - Exodus 34.27-28
Jacob - Genesis 28.10-22
Jesse - 1 Samuel 16.1-13
Jonah - Book of Jonah (it's short!)
Esther - Esther 2-5

Mary - Luke 1.26-33
Joseph - Luke 2.1-7
John the Baptist - Luke 1.5-25, 57-64, 80
Jesus - Matthew 1.1-17
Miriam - Exodus 15. 20-21
Ruth - Ruth 3.7-18


Reference: CatholiccultureJesse was the father of the great King David of the Old Testament. He is often looked upon as the first person in the genealogy of Jesus.


In Church art a design developed showing the relationship of Jesus with Jesse and other biblical personages. This design showed a branched tree growing from a reclining figure of Jesse. The various branches had pictures of other Old and New Testament figures who were ancestors of Jesus. At the top of the tree were figures of Mary and Jesus. This design was used mostly in stained glass windows in some of the great medieval cathedrals of Europe. The Cathedral of Chartres (which was dedicated in 1260) has a particularly beautiful Jesse Tree window.

Another development in religious art during the Middle Ages was that of Mystery Plays--drama that depicted various Bible stories or lives of Saints and Martyrs. These plays were performed in churches as part of the liturgical celebrations. One such play was based on the Bible account of the fall of Adam and Eve. The "Tree of Life" used during the play was decorated with apples. (Quite possibly this is also the forerunner of our own Christmas tree.)

Combining the two ideas of the stained glass Jesse Tree window and the Tree of Life from the Mystery Play we come up with our Jesse Tree Advent project. This custom has been used for years to help Christians to prepare for Christmas.

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