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Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children…
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Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children into the Joy of Worship… (urspr publ 1993; utgåvan 1993)

av Robbie Castleman

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
554431,387 (3.93)3
"Daddy, I'd like you to meet my children."That's Robbie Castleman's attitude about taking her children to church. She believes that Sunday morning isn't a success if she has only managed to keep the kids quiet. And she knows there's more to church for kids than trying out their new coloring books. Children are at church for the same reason as their parents: for the privilege of worshiping God.Worship, Castleman writes, is "the most important thing you can ever train your child to do." So with infectious passion, nitty-gritty advice and a touch of humor, she shows you how to help your children (from toddlers to teenagers) enter into worship.In this significantly revised and updated edition Castleman includes a new preface and two new appendices that provide new perspectives on children's sermon and intergenerational community. She also provides a study guide for personal reflection or group discussion. More than ever, Parenting in the Pew is essential reading for parents and worship leaders who want to help children make joyful noises unto the Lord.… (mer)
Medlem:clardy
Titel:Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children into the Joy of Worship (Children in Public Worship Series)
Författare:Robbie Castleman
Info:InterVarsity Press (1993), Paperback, 125 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
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Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children into the Joy of Worship av Robbie Castleman (1993)

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As a frazzled father of three, I know how hard church can be. While life at home is often pandemonium in church I feel like I have to reign those kids in. At the very least keep them from kicking the pew in front of them. Author Robbie Castleman challenges us parents to enlarge our vision of what our kids can experience in church. Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children into the Joy of Worship, now in its third edition, brings together Castleman’s skill as a theologian, and her experience raising her sons in church. This is a thoughtful book which challenges readers to invest in teaching kids to worship God (not just behave themselves) and leading them to a fresh encounter with God. Along the way Castleman shares insights, personal anecdotes and stories of how other parents have been able to ’parent in the pew.’


Castleman’s book begins with a plea for parents to ‘pay attention’ to their children, how they learn and how they can participate in worship. She argues that participation in worship is formative for children (and the rest of us). But she knows the challenge. In one witty chapter, she discusses ‘Worship BC and AD,’ that is, ‘before children’ and ‘after diapers.’ When we seek to enter into God’s presence our children may be a distraction. If we are not careful we will end up teaching our kids to be ‘quiet in church’ without really teaching them the meaning of worship and failing to participate in worship ourselves. Worship is about giving God his due glory, not about our own experience. God is not the least bit bothered by our kids participating (just ask Jesus).

From there Castleman explores the elements of worship and how to prepare your kids to participate. For those who worship on Sunday morning, this preparation often begins the night before (making sure kids get enough rest, are awake and ready for church, the tone you set for the day, etc.). Castleman provides various strategies for maximizing attentiveness to the sermon, getting kids to sing, pray and participate in the liturgy.

This edition updates the examples for a new generation (the original edition was published twenty years ago). Earlier editions talked about Castleman’s experience of training her own sons in worship. Those stories are still here, but now her sons are grown and are parenting their own children’ in the pew.’ Additionally there are examples from other parents she’s encountered at ‘parenting in the pew’ seminars and workshops.

What Castleman says here is really valuable. As Christians we were made to worship God and I believe our participation in corporate worship is formational. The vision she has for including kids in worship, preparing them for Sundays and cultivating attentiveness to the Word is commendable and I think right on target. She also communicates her vision of intergenerational ministry with wit and grace. I appreciate that while she has some clear directives (don’t bring a coloring book to distract your kids but seek instead to get them to participate) she also honors the differences in children’s personalities. If worship is about paying attention to God, teaching worship to our kids begins with paying attention to them.

Putting this book into practice may be challenging for parents if their church doesn’t have a vision for intergenerational ministry and the participation of kids in worship. My family and I are lucky enough to be a part of a church community which really values getting the kids involved in the worship service. Other churches in town do not have the same value. For parents seeking to carry out Castleman’s suggestions, they may find that they are kicking against the goads. There is enough in this book which challenges leaders to make the worship a more hospitable place for children but Castleman addresses the leadership challenge more directly in Story Shaped Worship (forthcoming IVP May 2013). Another challenge for parents is that some of Castleman’s suggestions work better for different developmental stages. Still parents of toddlers to teens can all benefit from this book.

I think this is a great book and would recommend it to both parents and ministry leaders. There are a lot of kids who grow up ‘quiet’ in church who later quietly leave out the backdoor. I think getting parents to invest in teaching their kids to worship and leading them to an encounter with God is necessary if we want our children to grow up in the faith. Pastoral leaders also need to properly care for children and families in their midst and encourage their spiritual growth. Castleman’s focus on worship is particularly refreshing. I give this book ★★★★.

Thank you to InterVarsity Press for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for this review. ( )
  Jamichuk | May 22, 2017 |
Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children Into the Joy of Worship by Robbie Castleman. ELC library section 6 C: Church Growth: Worship/Symbolism/Families. Among all the excellent help and advice offered in this book, written by a minister’s wife and worship training mentor, one paragraph particularly stood out: its purpose is to train a child to worship, not to be quiet. Simply telling them to be quiet does not draw their attention to worship and what is taking place. This distinction is very important to a child. Quietness at certain times may enhance their ability to worship, but quietness is a means to this effort, not the end. Aha, I thought. She hit the nail on the head!
Training children to worship does not always enhance our sense of closeness to the Lord, especially at first. It can be hard on our nerves. We may think others our kids are distracting others (because they are sure distracting US!). Our feeling of connection to God during worship may be impoverished by the demands of parenting in the pew. Helping our children to concentrate on worship takes hundreds of ‘prompts” and can be exhausting. BUT this effort is also pleasing to God. And that is the thing to remember as you parent in the pew.
The first chapter is aptly titled, “Daddy, I’d like you to meet my children.” We are bringing our children to worship so they can meet God, their creator. Parenting in the pew can help children AND parents pay attention to what is really going on in worship – a win-win situation for all. Worship comprises a lot more than just “going to church and being good.” Proper behavior at church is worship: taking part in singing, paying attention to readings and sermon, silent and corporate prayer and declaration of the creed, taking part in and understanding the meaning of Holy Communion. We bring out children to church to learn to worship – to do these things.
Chapter 2 is cleverly called, “Worship bc and ad (before children and after diapers). It discusses the meaning and challenges of worship, our motivations for attending worship and for bringing our children to worship. Rather than sitting in the pew like rocks, she says parenting in the pew is to put those rocks out of work.
Chapter 3 discusses children’s readiness and ability to believe what cannot be seen, and their open, faith-filled responses. While some congregations send their kids out to children’s church or Sunday School, she asks us to recall that Jesus put a child in the midst of the disciples to get the disciples to pay attention. Kids often grasp ideas that a minister wants her entire congregation to grasp. The minister asks, rhetorically, “Who shall I send on this mission?” and a child pipes up, “I’ll go if my Mom will let me!!” This benefits everyone! Remember ELC’s own little Dalton Meyer singing an unprompted, “Jesus Loves Me”? This was Dalton’s gift to us all, and was the result of being parented in the pew as well as at home.
Later chapters discuss worship preparation (it begins on Saturday night), the tendency to keep our kids “busy” during worship with toys, snacks and books rather than encountering God (guilty of that one myself!), making a joyful noise (taking part in singing and listening to worship music), prayer, sermons, training children to worship who have learning disabilities, and nurturing a lifetime of worship skills. ( )
  Epiphany-OviedoELCA | Aug 26, 2013 |
This was so helpful to me for times of worship. Instead of viewing my children as in the way of worship, it taught me to bring them along. Instead of segmenting our family in church, we were able to be together. ( )
  MrsLee | Apr 5, 2007 |
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"Daddy, I'd like you to meet my children."That's Robbie Castleman's attitude about taking her children to church. She believes that Sunday morning isn't a success if she has only managed to keep the kids quiet. And she knows there's more to church for kids than trying out their new coloring books. Children are at church for the same reason as their parents: for the privilege of worshiping God.Worship, Castleman writes, is "the most important thing you can ever train your child to do." So with infectious passion, nitty-gritty advice and a touch of humor, she shows you how to help your children (from toddlers to teenagers) enter into worship.In this significantly revised and updated edition Castleman includes a new preface and two new appendices that provide new perspectives on children's sermon and intergenerational community. She also provides a study guide for personal reflection or group discussion. More than ever, Parenting in the Pew is essential reading for parents and worship leaders who want to help children make joyful noises unto the Lord.

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