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Day Two

Mary: the Blessed Believer

This is the page for Day Two.  On this page you can find background for Mary as well as an explanation of the key beatitude.  In addition, you can find the story/service, art, science, and games guides with demonstration videos as well as the music guide and whodunnit episodes.  Those guides are also available on the home page along with the overview.  

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God."

Matthew 5:8

Click or tap on these icons to take you to the right guide.  You can also find the supply list here:









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A note to Families: activities during VBS at church may only take about 20 minutes but that's made possible by lots of prep work.  Preparing for and completing an art, science, or service project might take all day.  That's okay!  You have all summer to explore the mystery museum.  

Day Two

Mary: the Blessed Believer

Learning Objectives for the Kids:

  • When Jesus was arrested, some of his followers ran away and some stayed with him like Mary.  Jesus’ love for all of his followers continued.

  • When Jesus died, all of his followers were sad including Mary. 

  • When Jesus came back to life he didn’t want his followers to be sad any more but he also didn’t want them to keep their happiness to themselves.  They had to share the good news.

  • Jesus chose Mary as the first person to send out with the good news because her heart never stopped being filled with his love.

  • Jesus’ resurrection is so amazing that our hearts should be pure like Mary’s.  That means they should be so full of all the emotions of life and love that Jesus shared with us that they are overflowing!  In this way we are all blessed more than can be measured!

Background on Mary Magdalene:                         John 20:1-18

     In the gospels of Luke and Mark we learn that Mary Magdalene (Mary of Magdala) had been healed by Jesus and then became one of his closest followers.  She may also be the same Mary who lovingly anointed Jesus’ feet with oil and her own hair in the gospels of Luke and John. 

     What we know for certain is that Mary stayed by Jesus’ side throughout his crucifixion.  When others were frightened away, she and several other women remained.  Mary Magdalene was one of the few people who continued alongside the dead body of Jesus as it was laid in a tomb.  When Mary returned later to the tomb she found it empty.  Although depictions of this discovery and Mary’s sharing of the news with the disciples differ among the gospels, we know for certain that Mary Magdalene first laid eyes on the risen Jesus. 

     In John she brings Peter and another disciple to the empty tomb, but while they return home in bewilderment she remains.  With tears running down her face, Mary enters the tomb to find two angels ready to greet her.  They ask her why she is crying and she affirms her dedication to Jesus even after his death by deploring them to help her find his body.  Leaving the tomb, Mary encounters a strange man who also asks her why she cries.  She again asks where she can find Jesus.  The man answers her by calling out her name. 

     Upon hearing him say “Mary” she recognizes the risen Jesus and falls to his feet.  Jesus then appoints Mary as his first apostle by sending her out to share the news of his resurrection.  Mary is chosen as the first drop of water that will grow into a tidal wave of good news spreading across the world.  Mary encounters the empty tomb with a heart that is profoundly saddened yet still filled with love for Jesus.  Her heart is chosen as the model for spreading that love as it bursts with the realization of God’s promises through the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. 

Key Beatitude:                         

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God." (Matthew 5:8 NRSV)

From Mary we learn that a pure heart is certainly not an empty heart—it's full!  Jesus’ empty tomb should forever be associated with full hearts among his followers.  Mary followed Jesus perhaps more loyally than any other and so exemplifies a pure and whole heart.  Even in the depths of sadness after Jesus’ death, her heart remained full of love.  From Mary we also learn that a heart that is full and pure isn’t plain but streaked and bursting with color.  Greif and joy, fear and hope, helplessness and faith all go into filling a pure heart.  Although we cannot see God with our own eyes like Mary, she still shares with us the vision of a God-filled heart.  With that kind of heart, your eyes should be set on sharing God’s love. 

Special Prayers:  As you learn about Mary, you’re invited to choose a prayer to repeat throughout the day.  The goal is to memorize the simple prayer so that it is there for you and your kids whenever you might need it in life, just like God.  You can choose between the more challenging prayer poem and the rhyming kid’s poem:

Mary Kid’s Prayer:

Help us to believe with hearts that sing.  
We are filled by your love till we’re overflowing.  
This is the joy that the good news brings!

Mary Prayer Poem:

Make me bright.  Make me bold.
Let my beauty show for others to see.
I have been painted over by your love.
I am a masterpiece of your goodness,
a showcase of your brilliance.

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Mystery Museum Story and Service

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Click or tap the icon for a day two pdf of the story guide that you can view online or print.  The guide includes a daily guiding question, learning objectives, supplies list, an activity introducing kids to the Bible story, questions to go with the Bible character video, instructions for a service learning project to reinforce the story, as well as a final lesson reflection.    

Service learning

Go deeper into the story by serving.

Right now, there are people in your community who feel alone and forgotten.  Today you can go deeper into service learning with Mary by making cards or videos for people in nursing homes.  Write a note or make a card for someone.  You can do this for someone you don't know personally or for a friend or a family member who you miss. 

Lots of free "thinking of you" and "thank you" card templates are available online, including these fun ones from Highlights for Children.

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Here is a helpful article from USA Today about doing this.  You can even make a video!  The American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living teamed up to offer this website where anyone can record a video to send a message of support and hope to nursing home and assisted living residents across the country. 


Mystery Museum Art


Puffy paintings

Click or tap the icon for a day two pdf of the art guide that you can view online or print.  The guide will lead you through how to make and use puffy paint.

Learning Objective: A heart that is full for Jesus is like a picture where
the colors are bursting (or puffing) off of the page. That’s the way that God
sees us, bursting with life and love and the possibility for even more.

Questions to ask the kids while you’re creating together:

  • What is the most excited you have ever been in your life? For example, was it a Christmas, a birthday or a trip?

  • For example, when you learned about a cool trip, or that your friends/family would be visiting, or that you could have breakfast for dinner?Have you ever learned something that made you super excited?

  • What did you do to share how excited you felt in those moments? For example, did you tell a friend or share whatever you got for Christmas or your birthday?

Click or tap the video icon for a video demonstration of Puffy Paintings.

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Mystery Museum Science


Becoming Electrified

Click or tap the icon for a day two pdf of the science guide that you can view online or print.  The guide will lead you through several electricity demos.


Learning Objective: Electrical charges act like invisible forces in the
world, but they have very real power. Everybody knows about the amazing
inventor Thomas Edison and his famous lightbulb. Not as many people
know about his former assistant Nikola Tesla who created or hypothesized
the electrical systems and wireless communication that we use today. Even
though Tesla was a hundred years ahead of his time, he died a poor and
forgotten man. If it weren’t for Jesus choosing Mary Magdalene as his first
apostle, we probably wouldn’t even know about her. Throughout his life
Jesus focused on the people who everyone else had abandoned or
forgotten. Jesus wanted us to learn that those people are an incredible
invisible force, like electricity.

Questions to ask the kids while you’re exploring together:

  • Have you ever experienced static electricity?

  • Can you see electricity?

  • How do you know that it’s there? What are some things that run on electricity?

  • Where does that electricity come from?

  • Where did Mary Magdalene come from? She was an outcast in an already impoverished place.

  • Who was Mary’s really close friend? Jesus

  • What did Jesus see in Mary that no one else seemed to see? Lots of faith in God and a greatness for sharing that faith to empower other people’s lives too!

Click or tap the video icon for a video demonstration of Becoming Electrified plus an exploration of a circuit board with Professor Sparks.

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Mystery Museum Games

Not Dodge ball


Click or tap the icon for a day two pdf of the games guide that you can view online or print.  The guide will lead you through playing an original game that seeks to invert dodge ball. 

Learning Objective: Can we play a sport where the last to be picked is
best? Jesus liked to pick and lift up the people that everyone else ignored or underestimated. When he gave those people a chance, they proved to be incredible! Who will you give a chance to shine?

Questions to ask the kids while you’re playing together:

  • Have you ever been picked last for something?

  • What did it feel like?

  • Has Jesus picked you to be on his team? Yes he has!

  • Who did Jesus pick to first share his good news? Mary Magdalene

  • Do you think Mary was someone who usually got picked last for things?

  • Why did Jesus choose to pick Mary first?

Click or tap the video icon for a video demonstration of Not Dodge Ball.

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Mystery Museum Music

Esther Song: Shine My Light


Click or tap for the

Mystery Museum theme song.

Mary never gave up. Her light kept shining with and for Jesus even after he had died and before he was resurrected. Mary’s uncompromised love is a large part of why Jesus chose her as his first apostle. Jesus sent Mary to go her own way and to carry his light to the world.

Each day's song comes to you from the Saddleback Kids youtube page.  The song is presented with easy-to-learn motions.  Click or tap the video icon for the music video.

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Mystery Museum Whodunnits?


A whodunnit is a mystery story that you can solve with the characters as you read along. You can also easily adapt these stories into skits. Click or tap the icon for a complete pdf of the whodunnits that you can view online or print.

At the mystery museum, Shurkey Holmes is on the case! The world's greatest detective is sure to gather enough clues to solve The Case of the Vanishing Portraits, especially with your help!

Click or tap the play icon for a reading of this whodunnit episode from Pastor Katie.

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What's going on with that portrait?


The Mystery Museum learning guides as well as the whodunnits were all written by Deacon Dan. He also created all the graphics, edited the videos, and built this website. He has served in children, youth, and campus ministries and offers these free resources on his art and ministry site, 

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