October 7, 2018
by Candace Kostna, Family Ministry Coordinator
On our website, we offer a snapshot of our family ministry model:
“We worship together as families. Instead of sending our kids away for Sunday school, we share a worship experience and then provide resources and encouragement for parents to take an active role in their child’s faith formation at home. We also encourage all of our members to act as an ‘extended family’, helping to pass on faith to our younger generation.”
So why are we looking at Christian education in a different way – worshipping together with our children and encouraging family faith formation at home? We are recognizing that while attending worship is part of our faith experience, family ministry extends beyond our church building. Parents play an integral role in modelling and teaching faith to their children, and need our faith community’s support. We are also nurturing our children’s faith biblically. As is says Deuteronomy 6:5-7:
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”
The Holy Spirit works through our trusted relationships and daily life experiences to form our faith. Our personal connections and experiences at church, in the community, and at home all contribute to our growth in faith. With that in mind, our family ministry model is based on the Four Keys of Faith Formation*:
• Caring Conversations
• Rituals and Traditions
These four basic faith practices are common themes woven into what we are doing in our family ministry. Though these ideas are not something new, it is important to look at these practices and continue to ask these questions: How do we grow in faith? How will our children grow faith? How can our faith community nurture our families and grow in faith?
In the next few blog posts, we will take a closer look at how these faith practices help us – as parents AND as a faith community – to interact with God, each other and creation and strengthens our faith in daily life.
Together we grow in faith!
* from the book: Frogs Without Legs Can’t Hear: Nurturing Disciples in Home and Congregation by David Anderson and Paul Hill