This afternoon we delivered our knitted sheep to their assorted homes for the next two weeks, but first we visited a nursery who had been invited to join in, so that we could meet the children and show them some of our sheep. It was amazing! Really enthusiastic staff who motivated and encouraged their charges, and were as excited as us about the sheep trail. Around 30-40 children will complete the trail just through that one contact... not counting their older siblings and parents/carers.
Then we began delivering the sheep to the shops. The ever-so sophisticated young staff young people who worked there became as little children as they selected and fell in love with the sheep they were to host. Names were chosen (some excellent names it has to be said), posters and trail guides supplied and smiles and laughter all round. It was evident that they had been waiting all day for this moment! Indeed, one venue had phoned me to ask when their sheep would arrive!!
I really hope lots of people take part in the trail and have lots of fun. I hope the shops find it worthwhile. But this much I know for sure - we have broken down some barriers and built some bridges already. Every venue participating is thrilled to have been invited to be part of this event, and I like to think that we have shown something of the love of Christ along the way.
As we walked along, my colleague observed "who would have guessed the power of a little knitted sheep"... sentiments not so far removed from the mystery of a God who chose to be born as a peasant child in an outpost of the Roman Empire.
There will be photos - we did get some of the flock before it dispersed (and I suspect will never be restored as a few venues are depserate to keep their sheep permanently!)