Two thumbs to Holly Gort, director of education at South Grandville CRC, for sharing this excellent idea! She’s working on a project that will strengthen the faith of kids, teens, and adults by helping them see God’s grace at work in their own lives. Holly’s plan is to offer a two-part workshop that will help adults and teens share their faith stories with younger members of the congregation.
Part one of the workshop will include guest speaker Ben Eggers, author of the book Sowing and Reaping Pizzas. Eggers will highlight the value of sharing faith stories by telling a few of his own stories of God’s faithfulness in his life. Then participants will explore several methods for communicating their story — using art, video, music, or photos, for example. By the end of the first seminar they will have ideas and questions to consider as they spend a couple weeks reflecting on the ways God can be seen at work in their lives.
Part two will involve gathering to listen to each other’s stories in small groups. Holly hopes that existing small groups in the church will sign up for both workshops to take advantage of the opportunity to grow in faith together and get to know each other in a deeper way. The goal for the second workshop is to give participants confidence and clarity in shaping and sharing their stories. The hope is that it will inspire them to talk more openly and frequently about their faith,and to continue to look for God’s presence and purpose in their everyday lives.
That brings us back to the kids … Holly wants the kids of South Grandville CRC to hear the adults and teens in their church talking about their love for God and naming ways they’ve experienced his care. She plans to encourage those who attend the seminar to take turns sharing their faith stories with the kids. She’d like to work those story times into the Sunday school schedule so that as kids learn about God’s faithfulness through the stories of Scripture, they’ll also hear stories of God’s grace and love from people they know in their own church family.
Thanks for sharing this idea, Holly! You’ve inspired me to think about new ways to generate faith talk across the generations within my own congregation. If you have ideas or words of encouragement for Holly please post a comment below or in response to her posting in the forum.