Michelle Anthony, in her new book, Dreaming of More for the Next Generation: Lifetime Faith Ignited by Family Ministry,expresses a certain regret and a resolve:
Partly out of ignorance, much of my past ministry had eliminated parents from experiencing their God-given role of nurturing faith. There were even times when, out of compassion, I felt that we as the church could help parents out by doing what they were struggling with.
[However], instead of rescuing children from the lack of spiritual parenting they were receiving, I began to think in terms of raising up spiritual parents and homes.
Michelle Anthony goes on to ask two really crucial questions for churches and newly-minted family ministry strategists to help “raise up spiritual parents and homes.”
How does the church come alongside parents to help them in their own faith formation so that the spillover of their faith influences their children in the way God envisions?
What shifts in ministry focus need to take place in order for us to devote time and attention to a ministry for adults when our infrastructure was designed for children and youth?
These questions (and their answers) have the potential to redirect ministry focus and resources from ministering TO children to ministry TO/WITH/AMONG parents…