Monday, April 16, 2012

A FHE of Titanic Proportions

The Mister and I switch off teaching the lesson for Family Night each week. Since we've been watching the miniseries Titanic (created by the makers of Downton Abbey) the past few nights, I thought it would be appropriate to liken some Titanic lessons to our lives. (Personal admission: I am absolutely fascinated by Titanic history. But that's a post for another day...)

We took the kids to see the Titanic exhibit when it came here to the museum. It was fascinating. (At least to me, anyway. The Mister... not so much.) I bought a replica of the 1st Class china dinner plate.

When you enter the exhibit, the docent hands each patron a passenger ticket, complete with the identity information and general life facts of one of the real-life passengers. You don't know if you survived or not until the end of the exhibit, at which point they have a 'survivor wall'. Pretty poignant experience, actually. As a side note, they also have a large ice stone for patrons to touch and experience some of the frigid temperatures that fateful night 100 years ago...

For tonight's lesson, I held up the plate and gave each child their passenger ticket that I had saved. My dialogue went something like this:

"Do you guys remember when the Titanic exhibit came to town a couple of years ago?"

*Affirming nods* Good, we're getting somewhere. Leaving Northampton, at least...

"I remember feeling anxious to find out if my passenger survived the tragedy. Secondly, I was anxious to see if any of my loved ones/traveling companions survived.

"Well, Dad and I can kinda relate that to the earnest desire we have as we hope to be reunited with each of you in the hereafter someday. Before we talk about that, who knows some of the reasons the Titanic failed?"

(Josh is all over this one... he's somewhat of a juvenile expert on the history. He chose to do his non-fiction book report on it. That's my boy.)

*Not having sufficient amount of life boats to accommodate the passengers

*The Captain giving orders to push the ship to it's maximum speed in order to reach New York faster than expected

*The Captain and his crew disregarded 6 ice warnings prior to the collision

*Some of the life boats were lowered into the water before reaching their maximum capacity load

As you can see, there are a number of Gospel parallels that can be made to the disaster. To keep things simple, we discussed some of the 'icebergs' or obstacles that would prevent us from reaching dry land in our lives. Bottom line: anything that would keep us from being temple worthy can destroy our spiritual survival. (We talked about pornography, dishonesty, drugs, etc.)

Afterwards, we sang "Families Can Be Together Forever", ate apple crisp and finished the final episode in the miniseries I mentioned above.

Incidentally, I would love to see the new Broadway musical, Titanic which is being staged by a regional theater company in Davis, CA. It served it's audience an 11-course feast replicating the 1st Class dining on the ship. Another personal admission: I am deathly afraid of large bodies of water. I never NEVER desire to step aboard a cruise ship in my lifetime. Titanic is my worst nightmare. But dang, I can teach a mean family home evening lesson on the ill-fated expedition.


Becca said...

Enjoyed your analogies. Powerful! Btw, this is Neil Parkinson's wife - saw your comment on Facebook and was curious to see the relation to FHE and the Titanic. If you don't mind, I might borrow the analogy sometime. Thanks for posting.

Sandy said...

I loved the Titanic Musical. It was Julie saw it in New York and turned on to it so when a local high school did it at the Scera we went. It is wonderful and I hope you can go. The music is wonderful and very touching. Sandy Alger

Heidi said...

What a great FHE lesson! I'm in charge of the lesson on Monday, if you don't mind I'm going to use your Titanic theme. I'm also impressed that you had the tickets from the exhibit. Even if I had saved ours I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be able to find them.