30 July 2012

a disappointing alternative?

Yesterday we weren't sure whether any children would come to church (one family is away, another had only just returned from holidays and were jet-lagged), and then we found out at very short notice that "our" chapel was in use by another priest so we were moved elsewhere. Vandriver and I managed to dash in just in time to grab a few things from the storage cupboard (located *in* the chapel) to carry to our temporary location, and I set up and then sat within a scaled-down Play and Pray area anyway, just in case any children did come.

location as usual, just behind the first row on "the Gospel side"

Happily, two showed up. They had been away most of the summer and this was their first introduction to Play and Pray. Although I would say that on the whole things went well, the 4-year-old turned to me during the service and asked, When are we going to have Junior Church again? Caught off-guard, and needing to whisper, I answered non-committally. After the service, at church coffee, the 4-year-old contentedly informed me, I think we'll have Junior Church next week. I'd like to have asked what aspects of Junior Church / Godly Play she prefers over Play and Pray (I have several ideas, but they are mine not hers), but as it was, I just tried to explain that it'll be Play and Pray at least until the autumn.

If her parents are reading, perhaps you'll inquire about her preferences if this topic comes up again. If somebody does start up Junior Church again in the autumn it'd be good to know what aspects work well for the children. And in the meantime, it may be that the church can make some changes to the way we do Play and Pray to incorporate some of what different children miss.

And other readers - what do the children in your churches like and dislike about being in church for adult services as opposed to going to Sunday School or other programs designed for them? (Don't know? Why not ask?)


  1. Storyteller, I have to say that I am definitely enjoying reading about this process of how the children's worship is evolving at your church. The anticipation of what will come next, the not-knowing what the future will hold . . . It's almost as good as watching an episode of "Downton Abbey".: )

    1. Thanks for this fresh perspective, Sheila. You made me chuckle!


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