by Rev. Melissa Cooper
LECFamily Program Coordinator
If you've been hanging around me or LECFamily in the last couple of years, you won't be surprised to hear me advocate for an intergenerational church.
It might be because when it comes to mature discipleship and lifelong faith formation, all the research tells us that intergenerational worship and relationships are the most influential elements we can provide in a child's life.
It might be because we know that a 5:1 ratio of adults to kids is ideal to develop the faith and maturity we hope they might have as young adults and adults.
It might also be because I see, year after year, the powerful relationships that are built during our LECFamily camps and retreats, and then hear from parents and pastors how those relationships have transformed not only those families but also their churches.
Chances are, you might already be on board with the idea that intergenerational culture is the answer to the future of the church and the Christian faith. If so, you're like a lot of folks I talk to. And yet, I still get one question again and again ...
This all sounds great, but how do we make it happen? What's the best curriculum? What if our worship is boring? What if we have grumpy people in our pews? What if the parents in our church are terrified of having their kids in the worship service with them?
So many of those questions can be answered, but the short answer is: It takes time.
Any culture shift is not going to happen overnight. Intergenerational culture is not a program or a curriculum - it's an entire change of the way we look at this thing we call church.
If you're wondering what the first steps are, check out two webinars I led for Discipleship Ministries:
Each of those webinars will give you some starting points to begin evaluating your own situation, and they'll give you a few short-term ideas while you develop your long-term vision and plan.
You can do this! Like all things worthwhile, there isn't an easy "quick fix." This is something we devote our lives to, because it is what Christ calls us to.
Want to further explore this topic with some help from LECFamily? Visit our Training and Enrichment page for more information!