Wearing the Crown of Thorns on the cross, Jesus sacrificed and suffered physical pain for our sins. The thorns represent the many pains Jesus suffered for our salvation. Place the crown somewhere visible in your home and over the course of the 40 days of Lent each member of the family will think of sacrifices to be made, ways to help others or spend extra time in prayer or doing a devotion. Each time something is done or a sacrifice is made, a thorn is removed from the crown and placed in the middle.
The hope is that when Easter Eve arrives all of the thorns have been removed and the wreath can be decorated with Easter flowers to celebrate that the suffering is over and Christ is Risen!
1 grapevine wreath, any size
1 box toothpicks (square toothpicks pictured)
1 bottle black RIT dye (or strong, black coffee)
1 disposable bowl
newspaper to protect surface from dye
rubber gloves to protect hands (optional)
Place newspaper down on your work area, Place the toothpicks into the bowl and pour in enough dye (or coffee) to cover them. Let them sit in the dye for about an hour. Pull one out and dry it off with a paper towel. If it is black enough for your liking, pull the others out and let them dry on paper towels. If not, leave them in for another half hour or so.
Once the toothpicks are all dry you are ready to place them in the grapevine wreath. As a family, gather around the wreath and wedge the toothpicks in all over. You will find that certain slots are just perfect for wedging a toothpick in and the tension of the vines will hold it in place. If a toothpick happens to slide through completely, put it in a new spot.
“Dear Heavenly Father, we invite you into our home and we offer you this Lenten wreath. We want to increase our focus on what Christ sacrificed for us on the Cross and lessen our focus on ourselves and our earthly desires. Strengthen our family, O Lord, so that we may put others first with humble hearts and so that our identities can be found in you. It is in Jesus’ name that we pray. Amen”