Children

Visit the Canaan Children’s Ministry Blog for updates

Preparing children for worship

Prepared by Nicole Lu, Director of Children’s Ministry, Canaan Taiwanese Christian Church. Email Nicole at this link.

Unrealistic Expectations of Children in Worship

  • To sit for 30+ minutes for message
  • To apply message to life
  • To truly listen to the message
  • To take it seriously
  • To participate fully

Realistic Expectations of Children in Worship

  • Not a spectator sport – they learn from adults around them
  • Participate in as much as they can (standing, singing, collect offering)
  • Ask questions and talk
  • Move around
  • Tune out at different times

Equipping Parents to Worship with Children

  • Help parents understand what worship is, how people worship, the purpose of worship, and how they should worship. Worship is not something we do just at church
  • Help parents see the value of worshiping with their children
  • Help parents set positive examples and have positive attitude about their children attending worship with them.

Guide Parents to…

  • Accept the God-given responsibility to nurture their children’s spiritual development.
  • Consider it an honor to lead their children in worship
  • Maintain regular attendance
  • Participate with their children in worship.
  • Remember the developmental characteristics of their children.
  • Encourage their children to participate as well.
  • Pray for and with their children
  • Recommended Book: When I Go to Church

Preparing for the Worship Experience…

  • Show your love for God during the week.
  • Apply Deuteronomy 6:7
  • Say “thank you” before meals and throughout the week.
  • Include conversations about God in everyday life.
  • View attending church as a special family event.
  • Make sure your child gets enough sleep on Saturday night.
  • Decide on what to wear to church on Saturday night.
  • Start Sunday with prayer.
  • Plan ahead/Get up early so the family is not rushed.
  • Provide a nourishing breakfast.
  • Stay calm and pleasant.
  • Enjoy travel time as a good opportunity for family time and positive conversation.
  • Be on time for worship.
  • Take your child to the bathroom and let him/her get a drink of water before going into the service.
  • Remove your child from worship service if his/her behavior is very distracting, explain his/her behavior is not acceptable, allow him/her to calm down, and then return to the worship service.
  • Provide your child with his/her own Bible.
  • Allow you child to take a “Big Church” bag with him/her – a “Big Church” bag is a bag for your child’s Bible and belongings needed for church
  • Encourage your child to listen for familiar names and words.
  • Provide your child with an offering to place in the offering plate or basket.
  • Talk with your child about things he/she will see or experience during the worship service.

Following the Worship Experience

  • Comment on your child’s behavior.
  • Ask questions related to the songs, sermon, and other things the child experiences.
  • Avoid negative comments about the worship service.
  • Mention the service in casual conversation throughout the week.
  • Answer questions the child has about experiences, words, or actions in the worship service.

Equipping the Congregation to Worship with Children

Guide the Congregation to…

  • See worshiping with children as a part of the Body of Christ.
  • Value the opportunities to worship with children and invest in the future generation.
  • Hold realistic expectations of children in worship.
  • Recognize and speak to children in worship.
  • Expect children to participate in worship.
  • Maintain positive attitude related to children in worship.
  • Partner with/mentor parents as they help their children to worship.
  • Realize children attending intergenerational worship may have never experienced this style of worship.
  • Speak in terms the children can understand.
  • Provide positive role models and examples for children.

Equipping Children for Worship

  • Talk with the children about what to expect before the worship service.
  • Talk about expectations of the children during the service.
  • Expect the children to participate.
  • Define words that children may not understand.
  • Encourage the children to take notes.
  • Encourage the children to ask questions.
  • Take the children to go to the bathroom and get water before entering the worship service.
  • Provide a “Big Church” bag – some churches that have intergenerational services every week provide this bag when new children join the service
  • Provide paper for children to take notes.

Equipping the Staff to Include Children in Worship

  • Avoid preaching sermons designed only for adults with careers, families, payments, and adult-centered themes.
  • Make references to things children experience and can relate to.
  • Define the terms children may not understand.
  • Explain ordinances such as the Lord’s Supper and Baptism.
  • Keep the children’s developmental levels in mind when planning and leading worship.
  • Avoid the urge to provide more entertainment than actual worship experience for children.
  • Remember children are concrete thinkers.
  • Paying attention to children in the worship service.
  • Provide first hand experiences for children to participate in.
  • Provide children’s worship bulletins designed with pastor’s message for the children to take notes.

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  • English Worship: Tim Tseng "Mold Me" (Isaiah 64:1-9) November 30, 2014 at 10:00 am – 11:30 am WH3_max120
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