children at ctf
It could be well-argued that the main reason for the outstanding decline in the American evangelical church is how we have wholly “dismissed” children, and all for horribly wrong ends. We dismiss them from our presence because they are a burden and make it difficult to pay attention. We dismiss them from rigorous learning because it takes so much time and they don’t listen well. We dismiss them in order to be entertained because it is so easy and we are exhausted. We dismiss them from being held accountable to obey, respect, and serve because we don't like to obey, respect, and serve ourselves.
Unfortunately, in adopting this culture of flesh, our kids never grow up. And so, as should be expected, when our kids leave home (and their pop-entertainment youth groups) they have no experience, understanding, or love for the mature things of God — no substantial foundation for worshiping God rightly, studying His Word faithfully, loving people unlike themselves, and submitting to those God has placed in their paths.
In response to this landscape before us, we believe that we are called to form our kids rather than dismiss them — called to grow kids up exactly within the Body of Christ and as full members of the Body being formed into even fuller members. In this, we place great value on challenging teaching and full congregational participation as we teach them to live the Story of God forever. Put another way, by the grace of God, we believe that kids that have been united with Christ are capable of so very much and should thusly be formed into responsible mature godly leaders ready to serve their communities in adulthood.
Our children meet for Sunday School each week at 3:15pm. For a deeper look at our philosophy of children, click here.
If you might be interested in our homeschool co-op program, Saint Benedict Hall, click here.
children in the worship service
Our Sunday Service “Program”
We passionately welcome children into our worship service. We know that small children often make noise. Children were no different in Jesus' day, and yet he invited them to himself, without regard for the distractions they might present (Mt. 18-19). While we ask parents to be considerate and sensitive to others, as a congregation, we have a high tolerance for the presence of children in worship and greatly value whole families learning to worship together, parent and child alike.
This invitation is quite intentional.
In this, we do encourage you to train and discipline your children to not simply sit still through the service (though there are times for this), but to engage the service as much as possible. That's one of the advantages of liturgical worship -- there is enough repetition within that even small children can be taught how to participate and in fact quickly and joyfully learn when to stand, kneel, sit quietly, raise their hands, and shout "Amen!"
With this said, we recognize that parents have the authority to determine the best way to integrate their children into the life and worship of the community. Therefore, we offer a cry-room (both in audio-fed library downstairs) for infants and young children, noting that even this space’s primary purpose is for parents to have a quiet space to hear the service while training small children. Please let us know your preference so we may best support and assist you.