Stars of Wonder

For Christmas last year, my daughter, a sixth-grader, was given a sturdy box filled with 365 pieces of origami paper—one for each day of the year. On the back side of each brightly colored “tomorrow’s” sheet of paper is a pattern for “today’s” origami.

As I write this, we are at day 148, and she has folded 148 pieces of paper, almost to the day. She’s like that. Oh, and of course, we save each and every one.

Divine Intervention?

Call it what you will, but as I was thinking about what to write for this article, the origami of the day was a spring flower. A spring flower that looked a lot like a star. That gave me an idea.

What if your congregation was given the opportunity to make, say, about five hundred of these stars? The size would need to be consistent, but the material could be whatever they had on hand: plain white paper, colored paper, or, better yet, Christmas wrapping paper bought last January at half price. And what if these stars were hung near the front of your worship space throughout Advent? Here’s how it could work.

Step by Step

  1. Start planning early. Give the congregation a few weeks’ notice of an opportunity to get involved in the coming Advent worship visuals—details to come. It’s an activity for all ages. To be successful, everyone’s help is needed. Sound desperate.
  2. Provide copies of an instruction sheet a month or so before Advent. Download our sample at and adapt it for your own use. Ask volunteers to make as many stars as they have time for, but at least twenty.
  3. Set out a box for the completed stars.
  4. As the stars come in, use glue dots to pinch the center fold of the stars around ten- to twelve-foot strands of string. Space them about ten inches apart.
  5. Hang strands of stars inside your worship space, adding more each week of Advent.
  6. On Christmas Day, carefully hang a larger white star in the middle of your corporate galaxy to symbolize the star of Bethlehem.

Promoted well—without a hint of fussiness—this could be a great way to involve a lot of people in your Advent worship. And make it more meaningful to boot.


Dean Heetderks is a member of Covenant Christian Reformed Church in Cutlerville, Michigan, and art director of Reformed Worship. Show and tell him about your experiences at

Reformed Worship 93 © September 2009, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship. Used by permission.