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Learn: Children and Young People
 

Easy to read but thought provoking; encourages churches to think about the place of children/young people in the church using an intergenerational model that genuinely respects and uses their gifts

 

Learn Children and Young PeoplLearn: Children and Young People 
By Suzi Farrant - Editor 
St Andrew Press 
ISBN No: 9780715209851 
Reviewed by: Moira Kleissner 



This attractive, well-illustrated, slim book is part of the “Learn: Connect: Inspire” series produced by the Church of Scotland. It explores how church relates to, and includes children and young people, starting from a Biblical base and examining up-to-date models that have worked in different settings. The authors of the articles are from the academic and practical worlds of children/young people’s work, ministers and volunteers, incorporating a wide variety of agencies and denominations, including Baptists.  

There are three sections: “Being Church Together,” “Working Together,” and “Forming Together.” Each starts with the Bible and ends with verbatim experiences of practitioners working in churches and church based community work. The final page of each section has a “Think, Read, Act and Resource” page providing what could be used for discussion starters or points of reflection.  

Subjects covered include: children and communion, baptism (both believers and infant baptism), mental health, family, justice, school chaplaincy, fresh expressions, young people as leaders and much more. It is very comprehensive but readable and useful. It can be taken further and deeper if the reader wishes by following through the book lists at the end of each section. 

I found this an easy to read but thought provoking book. This is one of the tools that can be used to stop the moan, “We have no children/young people,” or “They do their own thing and leave us.” It encourages churches to think about the place of children/young people in the church using an intergenerational model that genuinely respects and uses their gifts, allowing them active and participating roles in showing Christ to the world; really what the aim of this book is in one long sentence.  

Can I encourage every minister and deacon to buy a copy and read it, reflect on it, and engage with it. It has lots of nice photos to encourage you. This is not a “latest-thing-that- tickles-zeitgeist” book with bells and whistles, but is firmly grounded in good theology and praxis. It is relevant to small, medium and large churches, churches with or without a family or youth worker. 

It shows what the worshipping community could be, if only we seek to include children and young people, not banishing them to their own activities with occasional dips into congregational action and worship. 

Buy it and read it and pass it on, please. 

 

Mrs Moira Kleissner, Baptist minister’s wife and retired primary teacher, retired writer/trainer of CURBS project for children 



  

Baptist Times, 12/07/2019
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