Whatever happened to the children's talk?
Recently retired Baptist minister Colin Sedgwick's observations on the children's talk, dress code, prayer and that perennially controversial issue, music
Thank you Colin. Much of value to reflect on - especially the children's challenge.
One further, and very severe, loss in many non-liturgical churches today is the absence of structured Bible reading - even in many Baptist fellowships, Scripture is no longer central as it once was. Yes, the preacher will read or refer to some verses in his/her 'slot'. But where now is the wide-ranging, considered and reverent listening to God's word which was once seen as so essential to our worship? I don't greatly favour liturgical forms, but in this regard we have much to learn from them. Free-form worship can so easily become self-indulgent. Let God speak!
Oh dear. We are positively antediluvian.
The Minister leads the service, not just in a dog-collar but a preaching gown. And he preaches from the pulpit.
We sing hymns to an organ (all right, we have a - non-amplified, non-guitared - music group sometimes). We often have a responsive psalm, too. And we use hymn-books or printed service sheets.
Prayers of intercession are carefully prepared and seek to relate both to the sermon and to current world events; we also say the Lord's Prayer every Sunday morning.
And - yes! - we have a Children's Talk; and we love it.
To be fair, our little Evening Service is much more free-and-easy.