This week the gospel text includes one of those saying of Jesus about welcoming children. While we know that this is primarily a socio-political statement, we also know that it’s important to encourage children to worship with the community and to learn to take on various roles in worship–it’s good for them and for the rest of us too.
So…what are some ways you incorporate young people into the worship life of your congregation?
And what are some liturgical ideas for bringing up the importance of being led by young people? (to get your creative juices flowing, here’s a call to worship from contributor Stephanie Anthony.)
Teri Peterson says
I think it would be interesting to have a call to worship, litany, confession, or affirmation that is led by various classes. So instead of dividing “one” and “all” or “men” and “women” or however else we might divide liturgy, we could have “elementary students” and “teenagers” and “all” or something like that. It would give their voices a chance to be heard, even if just for a moment.
We often have young people as liturgists–though I’d like to see that happen even more regularly.
I’ll have to contemplate a piece of liturgy that is more “about” young people…I wonder what an affirmation of faith in this vein would look like?
Sue Jacobson says
We have both an adult worship leader and a youth or child worship leader every week. The youth or child regularly offers the prayer for illumination and reads the Psalm for the week, a job they take very seriously. We recently had a 5 year old read Psalm 138: 13-18…great reader whose voice opened that passage in a way that brought tears to our eyes.
The children also lead the congregation weekly in a call and response prayer after the “Conversation with the Scripture” (children’s sermon).
Vacationing congregants who worship at other churches often come back saying they truly missed hearing the voices of children in worship.