Key ideas that we can teach children about the church
At first, children think about a church as a place to worship the Lord. later, they can learn how people become part of the Lord’s church as they grow spiritually. The Lord sees us all as potential angels. Going to church and reading the Word can help us reach this potential. “A person is born for everlasting life, and it is the church which brings him to this (True Christian Religion 415).
Little ones can be taught:
- We go to church to worship the Lord and to learn more about Him.
- The Word brings the church and heaven together. The angels are near us when we read and hear the Word.
- People become part of the church when they obey and live what they have learned from the Word.
When children are older, they can learn that:
- The whole purpose of the church is to teach people how to be good and loving so they can be useful.
- All people are saved if they worship one God and lead a good life (whether they are in the church or not).
- If we don’t learn to be good we are not in the church, no matter how much we know.
- The church grows within us as we receive the Lord in our lives.
Ideas for teenagers include:
- The Church is the Lord's heaven on earth—the happiness and peace it can give you is a little like heaven.
- The church universal includes all people who live a good life according to what they know to be good from their religion (see Heaven and Hell 328).
- The special church (or church specific) is where the Word is, where the Lord is known and worshipped, and where people live in genuine charity.
- The New Church has the potential of bringing the highest truths and greatest happiness to people on earth.
Resources for all ages
- Building the Lord's Church by Rt. Rev. Thomas L. Kline
A family talk on what really makes a church and how we can help the Lord to build one.
- “What Is the Church?” excerpts from a sermon by Patrick A. Rose
We can talk about a church as a place to worship the Lord but in another way, the church grows within us as we look to the Lord and do what is good.
- The Lord’s Church with Everyone (ages 5-12)
The Lord’s church is with all people in the world who live in good according to their religious principles. Illustrate this idea by making beautiful glass globes to represent the earth.
- What Is a Church? (ages 4-8)
Brainstorm things you associate with the word "church" then decide what is the most important thing about a church. This activity is inspired by Margaret Wise Brown's The Important Book.
- A Global Perspective on the Church (ages 8-teens)
Make a collage to illustrate the teaching that the church is with all who live in good according to their religious principles.
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