This blog has been cross-posted in the Elders and Sunday School sections of The Network.
If your congregation is like many we’re in conversation with, you’re seriously considering Synod 2010’s decision to welcome baptized children to participate in the sacrament of communion. Perhaps you’ve checked out the Faith Formation Committee’s website (www.crcna.org/faithformation), perused the history of this ongoing discussion within the CRC, weighed the committee’s recommendations in the light of your current sacramental practices, and felt encouraged by this new opportunity to gather around the Lord’s Table in a family meal that nurtures and deepens the faith of all of the members of your congregation. We hope so!
But with change comes challenge—along with the need to replace old processes and practices with new ones. That’s the challenge we’d like to address in the upcoming webinar, "Children and the Lord’s Supper," scheduled for Wednesday, April 25. We’re thinking you’ll have questions you’d like us to address, questions along these lines:
- How can we engage our members in a healthy discussion of the issue so that everyone understands and embraces this significant change?
- What role should elders play in supporting and implementing these changes?
- How should our congregation involve parents and children in the process? Isn’t it really up to parents to decide whether their children should participate in the sacrament?
- What does it really mean that we should all approach the Lord’s Table with age-and-ability-appropriate faith? We’re not sure what that looks like in children.
- What are other congregations doing to thoughtfully prepare their children to come to the Lord’s Table?
- What blessings have other congregations experienced as they’ve opened the Table to children?
We’re looking forward to the opportunity to exchange ideas with you—and to share our hopes for nurturing the faith of our youngest members as we gather with them at the Lord’s Table. We’ll try to anticipate your questions, but it would be a whole lot easier if we’d hear them from you as we prepare for April 25. So please visit www.crcna.org/webinars to register—and post your questions in the comments below.