Family MinistryLiving Out Our Baptismal Covenant
The Kansas District Child and Family Life Committee (CFLC) is committed to assisting congregations in their ministry and responsibility to strengthen marriages, parent and grandparent-child, and other faith mentoring relationships, and to support them in their role of passing on the faith to the next generation.
Marriage and family life are God’s design for rearing children and passing on the faith from generation to generation. It is God’s original plan and the ideal. In our fallen world, much has changed in regards to family life, formation, and structure. While holding up God’s plan, the Gospel needs to be proclaimed to families of any shape and form. Christ is central.
To that end, the CFLC affirms the role of equipping, resourcing, and encouraging congregations toward crafting their own vision of family ministry in order for all to more fully live out their baptismal covenant.
The Children’s and Family Life Committee has created a new resource! Our goal is to help parents in our district get Back to the Basics: Rediscovering the Faith at Home. Each month we’ll recommend a resource based on a given topic, with a link to a short video review posted here on the Family Ministry page. Our hope is to show you how these resources can enrich your faith life with the family. While some resources will be obviously targeted toward families, we’ll also recommend some resources that you might not have otherwise considered. We’ll show you how they can apply to teaching and growing in the faith at home. We’ll also provide you with a list of secondary resources for further exploration into the topic.
Below, you’ll find the recommendation for the current month, followed by a list of previously recommended resources (with a link to the Workers Together issue in which reviews appeared).
Recommended: The Baptism of Your Child
The Baptism of Your Child by Thomas Fast and Carla Fast (CPH) is a liturgical take on family faith development. The first half of the book walks the reader through the section on Baptism in Luther’s Small Catechism and the actual Rite of Baptism. The second half of the book provides various options for bringing faith development into the family through home life, church life, rituals, and traditions. The book concludes by introducing the idea of a family altar complete with a suggested list of prayers, Bible passages, and hymns.
This book consistently affirms that parents are the primary faith teachers of their children, whereas church and school play a secondary support role. This perspective is in line with Luther’s view of the role of parents in faith development. To help parents achieve this goal there are various ideas about how to make faith a part of regular life, focusing primarily on ages 1-3.
Overall, this book would be a great resource in the hands of parents who are committed to making full use of the hymnal and Luther’s Small Catechism.
Recommended: Family Wellness: Raising Resilient, Christ-Purposed Children
Review: December Workers Together
Why Family Ministry in Your Church?
Family ministry is rooted in Baptism. While it is true that our Baptism may have taken place years ago, while many of us have only a certificate to assure us of this, yet, it is, in fact, the greatest thing that has ever happened to us; it was our birthday into God’s Kingdom of Grace. Perhaps it would be well for us to hang our Baptismal certificate on the wall or to write, as Luther did, on our desk – “I AM BAPTIZED!” What better thought could we have to begin each day and as we close our eyes in sleep than to recall our Baptism? Baptism is not a momentary act. It’s a lifelong relationship to be celebrated and affirmed.
Family Ministry: Strengthens Marriages, Parent & Grandparent Relationships
God’s original design for us was that we would function within healthy relationships. Unfortunately, that aspect of our existence is also impacted by the reality of sin in our lives. While God’s love redeems us through the sacrificial blood of Jesus, relationships on this side of heaven still require intentional effort, a lot of grace, and many second chances, if they are to be healthy.
Again, the CFLC desires to support all in the baptismal journey by offering the following family ministry services for congregations, schools, Church workers, and laity of the Kansas District, LCMS:
- Free consultations – trained facilitators willing to assist pastors, other church workers, and lay leaders, with assessment tools and best practices in marriage and parent education.
- Marriage ministry – trained leaders excited to offer marriage enrichment experiences for church workers and their spouses. Retreats and workshops for laity are also available.
- Workshops –
- Heart of Family Ministry – a one-hour overview of family ministry strategies and resources for the congregation and the home, tailored for a Bible class.
- Faith and the Home – a series of half-day workshops designed to equip, resource, and encourage congregations toward crafting their own vision of family ministry. Participants learn ways to strengthen the family’s role of passing on the faith to the next generation.