Longfellow: The Magnanimous Heart of Lanello

 Children’s Story

 Materials: 

  • Online audio clips, “The Magnanimous Heart of Lanello: Longfellow” and “Excerpt from The Song of Hiawatha.
  • Pictures of Longfellow
  • Picture of Lanello
  • Picture of Longfellow’s daughters

 Preparations:

  • Because online videos often take a few minutes to download, play the related video before the story begins to ensure that it will be ready when needed.
  • Prepare any necessary materials.
  • Invite children up to steps of altar.
  • Reader of story sits in a chair with children sitting on floor in front of her.
  • Include children’s story, even if there are no children in your congregation, to welcome families who may come to the service.
  • You can add your own creativity to the stories.  You may feel comfortable using props or presenting them just as they are written.
  • Feel free to adjust the content to fit your time frame.  However, for the spiritual development of the child, we encourage keeping as much of the Ascended Master’s Teachings as possible.

Good morning and welcome.  This morning our story is about Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.  Do you know who Longfellow is?  (Allow children to answer.)  Yes, he was a poet.  Longfellow was an embodiment of the ascended master Lanello, the founder of our church and one of our beloved messengers.

This Tuesday on February 26, we celebrate Lanello’s Ascension Day.  Here is a picture of Lanello.  (Show picture.)

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Lanello ascended in 1973.  Then on this Wednesday, February 27, we celebrate Longfellow’s birthday.  Longfellow was born on February 27, 1807, in Portland, Maine, which at that time was a part of Massachusetts.  Here is a picture of Longfellow when he was young and here’s one when he was older.  (Show pictures.)

 

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Our beloved Guru Ma told us why we should study Lanello’s embodiments.  She said that in order for us to put on the mantle of Lanello’s mastery, we need to study his previous incarnations.  If we want to embody the virtue of a particular ascended master, then we must we must go back to the point where that virtue started and learn how it advanced and eventually was won.

The most notable virtue that we can learn from Lanello’s embodiments is that of the magnanimous heart.  Does anyone know what magnanimous means?  (Allow children to answer.)  “Magnanimous” means literally “great spirit” or “great soul.” It is noble generosity, forgiving and having high courage.

In each of his past lives, Mark was developing another facet of his magnanimous heart.  When you have a magnanimous heart, you can give away more grace, more generosity, more politeness and more love, because you have more than you need.  That is what Longfellow and Mark Prophet were able to do.

Both of them had a deep relationship with the Holy Christ Self in their hearts.  And when we learn about Lanello’s embodiments, we can learn from them how to expand our heart flame like he did.

Let’s hear the story of Longfellow now.

The Magnanimous Heart of Longfellow

In the nineteenth century Mark was embodied as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, the most popular American poet of the day. Longfellow enjoyed writing at a young age.  How old do you think he was when he got his first poem published?  (Allow children to answer.)  Let’s listen to our beloved Guru Ma tell us a story that will answer this question.   You will hear an audio and see pictures of Guru Ma and a few of Longfellow, although there are none of him as a young boy.  (Play online audio clip.) 

How old was he?  (Allow children to answer.)  Yes, he was ten.  It seems like he knew what his mission in life was at an early age, doesn’t it? 

A friend of Longfellow shared this about the magnanimous heart he saw in Longfellow:

“Perhaps the most remarkable traits in Longfellow's character were his accessibility and his charity. Though a great worker, he seemed always to have time for anything he was asked to do.  He was never too busy to see a caller, to answer a letter, or to assist by word or deed anyone that needed assistance….”

As a young child Henry liked music and books.  He read a great deal with his mother, and they took long walks together, for they both loved flowers and birds.  When only three years old, Longfellow attended school with his older brother Stephen.  Incredibly intelligent, by age six, Longfellow already knew Latin grammar, could read, spell and multiply.

Twice every Sunday Henry went to church with his mother.  In the cold weather he carried her foot-stove for her (a funny little box which held coals).  In the summer he carried her flowers because once the flowers began to bloom, she never went anywhere without them.

Henry was willing to do any errands or tasks that his mother wished him to do.  He did not mind even driving the cow to pasture, for as he walked along, he usually was making up rhymes.

After Henry graduated from college, his father wanted him to be a lawyer, like himself, but Henry was sure he wanted to be an author. He said: “Don't ask me to study law, father; I think I can write books. Anyway, if you will let me have my way, I will promise to be famous at something.”

So his parents let him travel through Europe.  He sent long, happy letters home, telling about the different things he saw.  The letters were so charming that all the neighbors wanted to borrow them.

 Longfellow became a professor in a college.  Besides teaching, Henry wrote poem after poem.  Eventually, he quit teaching and only wrote poetry.  Longfellow became one of the most famous poets of his time.  In a short period of time, his verses were liked in other countries as well as in America.  So many countries were asking for his poems they were translated into fifteen languages.  Longfellow was soon called “The Poet of Every Land.”  His father must have been proud that his son had gained the respect as a man of the pen and of the heart.

Our beloved Guru Ma said, “To me Longfellow’s poems are dictations from the ascended masters…. “

We have a great audio clip of Mark Prophet reading an excerpt of one of Longfellow’s poems, The Song of Hiawatha.  What’s interesting is that another one of Lanello’s embodiments, besides Mark Prophet and Longfellow, was Hiawatha.

            This poem is about the adventures of an American Indian hero.  The poem is a long story called an epic.  It presents a series of encounters and contests that enable Hiawatha to bring blessings to his tribe and to help create peace among the other tribes.

            The few lines that we are going to hear are from the first chapter of the poem called the Peace-Pipe.   Gitche Manito, the Great Spirit, is preparing his peace pipe to call the warring and vengeful tribes together, informing them of a prophet who will come to guide and teach them.  Hiawatha is the prophet.

The audio we’re going to hear begins with Guru Ma telling us about the richness of Mark’s voice.  Then we’ll hear Mark read a few lines of the Peace-Pipe.  You will see pictures of Guru Ma and Mark Prophet while you listen.  Let’s listen now.  (Play audio.)  Did you like his voice and the poem?  (Allow children to answer.) 

Longfellow is often called the children’s poet because children, as well as adults, enjoyed his poetry.  Children would flock around him and they could recite hundreds of his lines.  They loved him as a person and as a poet. 

Longfellow had six children of his own and was never too busy to play with them.  His poem “The Children’s Hour” is about him and his three daughters and a routine of what they did together at the end of their father’s work day.  Here is a picture of his daughters.  (Show picture.) 

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The girls liked to sneak up on their dad while he was sitting in his favorite chair.  Have you tried to sneak up on one of your parents and surprise them, but you really knew that they knew you were there?  It’s a fun and special time, isn’t it?

Here is the poem:

The Children’s Hour

 Between the dark and the daylight

When the night is beginning to lower,

Comes a pause in the day’s occupations,

That is known as the Children’s Hour.

I hear in the chamber above me

The patter of little feet,

The sound of a door that is opened,

And voices soft and sweet.

From my study I see in the lamplight,

Descending the broad hall stair,

Grave Alice, and laughing Allegra,

And Edith with golden hair.

A whisper, and then a silence:

Yet I know by their merry eyes

They are plotting and planning together

To take me by surprise.

A sudden rush from the stairway,

A sudden raid from the hall!

By three doors left unguarded

They enter my castle wall!

They climb up into my turret (castle tower)

O’er the arms and back of my chair;

If I try to escape, they surround me;

They seem to be everywhere.

They almost devour me with kisses,

Their arms about me entwine,

Till I think of the Bishop of Bingen

In his Mouse-Tower on the Rhine!

Do you think, O blue-eyed banditti,

Because you have scaled the wall,

Such an old mustache as I am

Is not a match for you all!

I have you fast in my fortress,

And will not let you depart,

But put you down into the dungeon

In the round-tower of my heart.

And there will I keep you forever,

Yes, forever and a day,

Till the walls shall crumble to ruin,

And moulder (crumble) in dust away!

 CONCLUSION:

Let’s call to Lanello and ask him to place his magnanimous heart over ours.  What does magnanimous mean?  (Allow children to answer.)  Yes, great spirit, great soul, generous, forgiving and having high courage. Let’s say together now, (Say devotionally) “Beloved Lanello, place your magnanimous heart over mine.”  Try to remember to say that each day.

Thank you for participating in our children’s story.  Have a wonderful week celebrating Lanello’s ascension day and Longfellow’s birthday.

Click here for printable version of story.


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