Monday, December 22, 2008
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Brigg Mothers' Union members were involved in the post-nativity event on Friday evening.
Co-ordinator Pam Braithwaite says: "Many visitors came into the church and church hall for fellowship, chat and refreshments."
Pam has also passed on a release from the MU, with a seasonal message:
Eight out of 10 parents want their children to believe in the nativity story.
A survey of parents has raised concerns that the church needs to do more to support families in the spiritual nurture of their children. The data reveals parents want to foster their children’s spirituality but shrink from mentioning God.
The research, carried out by Christian family charity Mothers’ Union, shows that whilst an overwhelming majority of parents (81%) teach their children about the birth of Jesus Christ at Christmas, only four percent plan go on to attend church services more with their children in 2009.
Three-quarters of parents believe the spiritual nurture of their children to be important. However, according to the survey just 7% are talking to their children about God as an avenue to lasting security in the credit crunch. Despite this desire to look after their children’s spirituality, parents are seven times more likely (49%) to cite family as the vehicle most likely to provide happiness and security to their children than God.
Reg Bailey, chief executive of the Mothers' Union said “It is encouraging that parents see connecting children with Jesus as only a little less important [14%] than the belief in Father Christmas. In these times of financial insecurity, it is clear that parents are thinking about the spiritual side of Christmas. This gives all Christians a challenge. Parents are telling us they have a desire to nurture the spiritual life of their children, but that they lack the confidence to talk about God. The church needs to connect with that hunger and get across the message that in times of both adversity and prosperity, it has a universal message which enables people to connect with something outside themselves.
The research, involving 1,005 parents of children aged 11 or under, was carried out by the family charity, Mothers’ Union, in an online survey last week.
The MU has 3.6 million members who are committed to supporting parents as they nurture their children spiritually.
To this end they have produced a series of five leaflets Children in Church designed to help parents and congregations engage with the spirituality of children. Leaflets cost 25p for a set of five.