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"Our churches need to continue to counter this growing trend," she said. "What if congregations actually welcomed family units, bringing them together as communities of formation?" the associate pastor in charge of children's ministry at Waterloo North Mennonite Church, Waterloo, posited as she confessed the reality of her own church as one where "families split up and go their separate ways" when entering the church doors."Why do we assume that listening to someone else speaking is the most important way to be in worship?" was another of her critiques, while questioning the assumption that all adults learn this way. "While children might act out, adults can daydream without anyone realizing that they are no longer engaged, that they have "tuned out," she said.In noting a shift from understanding the Bible as abookfull of "unquestionable morals and absolutes, to a living, breathing book from which there is always something to experience, understand, learn, play and think about," she promoted the present Mennonite curriculum series, Gather 'Round, saying the Bible-based study for nurturing children, youths and their families is "awesome and easy to use."
18 Canadian Mennonite May 31, 2010 Eastern Canada Annual Delegate Sessions Let’s call it ‘formation hour’ By Dick Benner editor/Publisher st. Catharines, ont. C alling for more involvement of children in worship by re-naming the traditional Sunday school hour “formation hour,” Lisa doors. Her suggested shift from education to for- delegates to “pay attention to all of our senses and to all of our ways of learning as we engage in worship.” Carr-Pries told Mennonite Church Eastern m a t i o n “turns She suggested that churches stand to pray Canada delegates, in their opening session our goals from some- and turn in different directions, act out a on April 23, that children in Canadian cul- thing that happens Scripture passage rather than just read it, ture are more segregated and isolated from solely in a classroom and insist that Scripture remains at the adults than ever before. to something that is heart of what the church does together, to “Our churches need to continue to counter modelled by the en- become “a meeting place where we encounter this growing trend,” she said. “What if con- tire community in powerful stories of the Bible given to us for gregations actually welcomed family units, the context of faith,” Carr-Pries the transformation of life.” bringing them together as communities of she said, basing her In noting a shift from understanding formation?” the associate pastor in charge remarks on Deuteronomy 6, when Moses the Bible as a book full of “unquestionable of children’s ministry at Waterloo North tells the Israelite parents to “recite God’s morals and absolutes, to a living, breathing Mennonite Church, Waterloo, posited as commandments to your children, talking book from which there is always something she confessed the reality of her own church about them at home, when you are away, to experience, understand, learn, play and as one where “families split up and go their when you rise and when you lie down, bind- think about,” she promoted the present separate ways” when entering the church ing them on your forehead, fixing them as Mennonite curriculum series, Gather ’Round, emblems and signs, and writing them on the saying the Bible-based study for nurturing doorposts. ” children, youths and their families is “awe- In today’s culture, when adults—especially some and easy to use.”
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