Get Personal with Puppets

Photo of Bill with furry critter puppet

Clyde (the puppet) with Bill (the handsome bearded guy) wearing the Ho!Ho!Ho! hat featured in “Clyde Teaches Jeff a Christmas Lesson”

Got a quirky kid who wants to serve the Lord?

Or, are you a quirky grownup looking for a fun ministry?

A puppet pal might be just the ticket!

My quirky son, Jeff, was eleven years old when he launched his personal puppet ministry with Clyde, a furry gray critter puppet who found us at a yard sale. Their performances were more like conversations between buddies than typical puppet plays. Instead of hiding behind a curtain, Jeff was “on stage” with Clyde. The pair chatted back and forth about the situation du jour and learned faith lessons in the process. Audiences laughed and learned right along with them.

They were a hit with children of all ages at:

  • Worship services
  • Vacation Bible School
  • Church picnics and meetings
  • Nursing home
  • Low-income trailer park
  • Library

I wrote funny scripted conversations for Jeff and his puppet pal to perform at our church. Topics ranged from girlfriends to giving, and from praise to pilgrims. Much of the humor in those scripts was tailored to Jeff and Clyde’s unique characteristics, so I didn’t give much thought to publishing them for other people to use.

But in February, 2012, with Songs for the Lord safely uploaded to Amazon, the Holy Spirit showed up with my next writing project: not just a collection of puppet scripts, but a whole book of guidance for puppeteers interested in this kind of solo puppet ministry! I’m especially excited to tell other parents of quirky kids about my joyful experience as Jeff and Clyde’s scriptwriter, acting coach, chauffeur, and all-around encourager.

Besides ten scripts, the book will offer loads of tips for:

  • Choosing a puppet pal
  • Performing with your puppet (vocal expression, body language, audience interaction, and lots more)
  • Developing your ministry
  • Writing your own scripts

Please join my posse of people praying Personal Puppet Ministry into publication! I’m working on edits now. The next step will be submitting the manuscript to potential publishers.

Meantime, to get a head start on your personal puppet ministry, you can:

  • Visit the CraftTales website for instructions to make a wraparound critter puppet like Clyde. The link is on my RESOURCES page. I’ll be adding more helpful links there from time to time.
  • Start people-watching. That’s a great way to learn how we human beings communicate emotions through body language and vocal expression. You and your puppet pal can use those tools to communicate your emotions to an audience.
  • Think about how you might build a funny faith lesson around your own delightful quirks and unique talents. Yes, you have some!

Have fun!

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