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Content about Children

January 22, 2018

When people visit our church for the first time, one of the things they often are most surprised to find is that we allow young children to stay in the main worship service. For the most part, churchgoers today are used to having children separated from the adults to attend children’s church while the adults have their own “big church.” The first thing most parents must figure out when they arrive at a church is where to drop off their children with the church’s child care workers or children’s programs.

May 19, 2017

Family Worship. Ask for a one-word response to the idea of worshiping together as a family, and the responses are telling: “Intimidating.” “Impossible.” “Important.” “Covenant.” “Bible.” “Wish.” “Regret.” And“How?!”

The “How” of Family Worship

How, indeed! Four years ago we were asked to work together to create a prayer book that could help families―—even families with young children!— worship together.

September 1, 2009

“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, ‘Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.’ When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.”
—Matthew 2:1-3

September 1, 2009

Prelude
“We Three Kings/Bell Carol,” arr. Foncannon
“Songs of the Season,” arr. Keveren

Welcome

Epiphany Prayer
Eternal God, you have made yourself known to people of all ages, all times, and all walks of life. As the magi were overjoyed when they saw the star, so may we be filled with joy as you reveal yourself to us this morning. Amen.

September 1, 2009

This children’s Christmas program, which incorporates questions and answers from the Heidelberg Catechism, follows the well-known structure of “sin, salvation, and service.” It is a celebration of God’s love for us and our response in faith.

June 1, 2009

Sometimes my three-year-old daughter wants to join me for worship instead of attending her Sunday school class. On one such Sunday, I ran down the litany of things she would not be allowed to do during worship if she stayed. I told her she wasn’t allowed to walk around, crawl on the floor, or talk; she would need to sit still and listen. Innocently she looked at me and asked, “Am I in time out, Mama?”

June 1, 2009

“In the future when your descendants ask their parents, ‘What do these stones mean?’ tell them, ‘Israel crossed the Jordan on dry ground.’ For the Lord your God dried up the Jordan before you until you had crossed over. The Lord your God did to the Jordan what he had done to the Red Sea when he dried it up before us until we had crossed over. He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the Lord is powerful and so that you might always fear the Lord your God.”
—Joshua 4:21-24

June 1, 2009

For the last fifteen years LaGrave Avenue Christian Reformed Church has welcomed children to the Lord’s table by means of a Table Fellowship liturgy.

March 1, 2009

The unfortunate history of the Lord’s Supper is that we have always managed to find a way to fight over the very thing that was meant to bring us together. So what are we disagreeing about this time? In many Reformed and Presbyterian churches the clash of the day is over whether baptized children who have not professed their faith should be allowed to take part in the Lord’s Supper.

September 1, 2008

Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see.” Christ Community Church takes this quote by cultural critic Neil Postman seriously. According to the church’s vision statement, it “desires to be a vibrant, spiritual community that shapes the next generation of God’s champions.” One way this happens at Christ Community is by involving kids in creating visual art that helps lead the congregation to worship God.

September 1, 2008

During Advent we wanted to draw all the generations in our congregation into the wonderful messages of hope, love, peace, and joy. To do that, we wrote dramatic scripts to reflect God’s command to tell the children the stories of his faithfulness. Storytellers represented the gospel characters who had received God’s message directly from angels: Zechariah, Mary, Joseph, and the shepherds.

June 1, 2008

This is the fourth in a series of articles with suggestions for how to be deliberate about encouraging faith nurture in your congregation’s worship.

June 1, 2007

This service centers on the theme of giving thanks for country, church, and children. Each of the three sections features a litany, meditation, and prayer that involve a number of participants from the congregation.

June 1, 2007

It occurred to me the other day that lining up my rather small CD collection in order of purchase date could provide an interesting study about my life.

June 1, 2007

When children are young, they learn words that build relationships. Some come easily: “Help!” “Why?” Parents and grandparents persistently teach them to say to others: “Thank you.” “I’m sorry.” We celebrate as these words become habits. When a child without prompting tells her brother, “I’m sorry,” we know that these words are beginning to shape her life and her relationships.

September 5, 2005

When our worship committee selected Peter Hoytema’s series “Six Biblical Characters, Six Traditions of Faith” (RW 65) for the 2002 Advent season, I scrambled to find a series of children’s messages that would complement the services. Unable to find what I was looking for, I turned to Hoytema’s article to see what I could glean for use with the children of our congregation. 

December 4, 2004

Keeping Paul’s missionary journeys straight can be tough. The stories are brief and many involve mostly preaching. It is hard to remember what happened. Our challenge was to communicate the information about Paul’s first missionary journey to our congregation in a way that was interesting, memorable, and brief. We wanted to present information about cities as well as people.

September 1, 1997
Cast

Three wise men
Children dressed in costumes representing some nationality. Each carries the flag of the country represented; for our drama we chose

—Europeans (Germany)
—Asians (Japan)
—South Americans (Venezuela)
—Native Americans (Canada)
—African (Malawi)

[Stage is two levels of risers, empty except for a floor mike, a lectern, and a candle. Angel enters.]

June 1, 1989

Today we celebrate the greatness of our God—the one who created us with minds to learn, gave us the abilities to master skills, and opens our hearts to understand that all learning is for his glory. We ask each person worshiping here today, whether four or eighty-four, to stand as we now celebrate schooling in this "Litany of Learning."

September 1, 1987

It's time again to start planning music for the Christmas season and devising ways to involve children in our Christmas worship. Year after year we search for new ways to tell the old story. What many weary children's choir directors and harried church school coordinators aren't aware of is that good complete programs are readily available.