This is part two of the series looking at the inclusion of Children & Young People in Worship – this time just a quick overview of the issue of segregation.
At Spurgeon Baptist Church it is our practice to spend the first part of the service with all ages present, before separating about half way through, with the young people leaving the service and heading into different age groups.
There appear to be three different approaches to the logistics of the Junior Church ‘hokey cokey‘ (in, out, etc). In brief, this involves Children and Young People:
- in at start of service then depart…
- positive: get to experience other people worshipping
- positive: experience ‘church’ together as a family
- positive: acts as an introduction when the leave Junior Church
- negative: sending them out can appear negative
- out from the start (never joining the main congregation)
- positive: appropriately targeted teaching & worship
- positive: a more relevant expression of church for them
- negative: never worshipping with adults
- out at the start but joining the congregation later
- positive: welcoming the younger ones into the Church
- negative: logistically more difficult
This is just a simple outline of the options and some positives & negatives of each – it is by no means exhaustive. Apart from spending the whole service together (traditional ‘family service’), can you think of any additional models to add? Do you agree or disagree with the positives/negatives as stated? Do you have some more to add? Leave your comments below.
The next post will have more to get your teeth into…