From the Pastor’s Desk – October 2013
The Imprints of Faith, Passing on the Faith Every Adult Needs. . .
To be able to become familiar with basic beliefs and religious practices of other faith traditions in the world.
In this day and age, it is amazing how many people travel to different places around the world. During these travels, you experience the culture of the place you visit. Many times, religion affects that culture. However, you don’t have to travel around the world to be confronted by a different culture or religion because you find diversity in all places, even in small communities. Because of that, children will have questions about different religious and faith practices. Instead of simply saying, “They are wrong and we are right,” what would it mean to be able to talk about what is different with the child who asks the questions?
One of the more popular topics for the 7-8th grade Wednesday night class is to talk about different religions and how they differ from Christianity. We even talk a lot about the differences between Christian denominations. Why do we do it? At some point, when a child grows up and is on her own, she will be making her own faith decisions. It is better for a child to know the foundation of her faith so that when she is looking for a worshiping community, she will know what to look for. It is also good for us to approach others who are different from ourselves with kindness. “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake as forgiven you.” (Ephesians 4:32) It does not mean that we agree with another religion, but it allows us an opportunity to live out our faith by how we treat others.
The working list we are using is from a book entitled Making a Home For Faith: Nurturing the Spiritual Life of Your Children by Elizabeth F. Caldwell and is actually entitled “Every Parent Needs.” However, I think it can be said that it isn’t just parents that need these things, but all adults. All of us are a part of a faith community. All of us promise to support and pray for those who are newly baptized, but how often do we think of acting on those promises? What better way to be able to pass on the faith than to know what we are passing on!