Presentation of Theotokos




  1. Student should identify the Presentation of the Virgin in the Temple as one of the twelve major feasts of the church.
  2. Student should be able to identify the major characters in the icon.
  3. Student should be able to simply tell the story of the feast.


      Possible Lesson Plan:

  1. Open with prayer.


  1. Tell the story of the feast, using the icon as a guide:

All of you remember that Mary was the daughter of Joachim and Anna.  Remember how they had prayed and prayed for a child?  They promised God that, if He would give them a child, they would dedicate the life of their baby to Him.  And God blessed them with a very special baby girl.  They named her Mary.

                        On Mary’s first birthday, Joachim called all the priests of the Temple to his home and there they all thanked God for this little girl.  But then, when she was three, Joachim and Anna brought little Mary to the door of the Temple itself.  Mary was such a little girl! Would she be able to climb the 15 steep steps by herself? But, as soon as little Mary was placed on the bottom step, she confidently climbed to the top. Other girls met Mary at the door, carrying candles.  And the High Priest, Zachariah, met the family.  He took Mary and led her into the Holy of Holies, where even the priest could only enter once a year.  This was because Mary was God’s special child, chosen from before she was even born to be the mother of His Son.  Mary lived in the Temple until she was twelve years old, learning the life of holiness and the teachings of God.


  1. True or False:

True                                         False

            Mary went to the Temple at 3 years old.        Mary’s parents were Moses & Ruth.

            Joachim & Anna were Mary’s parents.           Mary went to the Temple at 12 years old

            Mary lived in the Temple until she was          Caiphas the high priest took Mary

                        12 years old.                                                    Into the Temple.

            Zachariah was the high priest.                        Mary lived in the Temple until she was 50 years old.

            Mary entered the Holy of Holies.                   Joachim and Anna left Mary at the

                                                                                                Temple because they hated her.


  1. Introduce the children to the people in the icon: Mary, Joachim, Anna, and Zachariah.


5. Remember the Old Testament story of Hannah and Samuel; reread it now in your Children’s Bible Readers. What is similar? What is different?


  1. Craft Idea: Living Mural

Before class with small children, or during class with elementary school age children, draw the icon with life-size characters on a huge sheet of mural paper (school supply or office supply stores sell these).  If you have more children than characters, make village girls and boys to accompany Mary standing behind Joachim and Anna, or other temple virgins with the priest. Have the children color the characters.   Then cut out the faces and hold up the mural.  The children can take turns standing behind the mural with their faces in the places of the saints.   

Leave the mural on the classroom wall for all to enjoy. In the end, cut it up so each child receives his character.


  1. Close with prayer.