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Faith

How to Make Nursery Ministry More Than Just “Babysitting”

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There are many wonderful ministries in the body of Christ which serve to edify and teach us, but have you ever considered the beauty and tremendous importance of church nursery ministry? Dale Hudson, a nearly 30-year veteran of children’s ministry weighed in on the subject of nursery ministry and its significance in helping to raise children in the faith in a thoughtful editorial for Relevant Children’s Ministry, and there is so much to glean from it!

“Since babies can’t talk, many people assume they can’t be impacted with God’s truth,” Hudson contends. “As a result of this line of thinking, many nurseries skip out on trying to do some type of ‘lesson.’”

However, contrary to what we might innocently assume, Hudson declares that “nursery ministry matters…a lot. And if you serve in nursery ministry, you matter and what you are doing in the nursery matters.”

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God designed our amazing brains to do a massive amount of development during the newborn and infant months. Even before babies can talk or understand speech, they can understand a surprising amount of our tone and intention in our speech. “Children who are read to from the Bible, talked to about God, sung worship songs to and given personal attention in the nursery will have better cognitive capacity,” Hudson says.

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Even secular experts concur, such as the executive director of UNICEF, Anthony Lake, who said that “what children experience in the earliest days and years of life shapes and defines their futures.”

It may seem like you’re just babysitting for an hour or so (by the way, babysitting can be an important ministry if you’re intentional about it!) but if you serve in the nursery, you are truly serving in one of the most important among the church’s ministries! You are laying a foundation of faith and assisting parents in their crucial commandment to train up their children in the way they should go.

So, how can those who serve in the nursery turn this time of “babysitting” into a time of ministry to precious little souls?

Pray over the children in your nursery

“As you hold them or rock them, interact with them and pray for them,” Hudson suggests. “Pray for Gods protection on their life. Pray that one day, when they are older, they will hear the Gospel and respond. Pray for their parents, that they will have wisdom and understanding as they raise the child.”

Saturate the nursery environment with God’s Word

Read Scripture to the babies! Decorate the room with verses that you can meditate on and pray with these sweet little ones in mind. Connections to God’s Word will be all the more effective with tiny children when you look into their eyes, too!

Remember, when you serve in the nursery, God is using you to help prepare the next generation of His people! Everyone who ministers to young people, whether they realize it or not, sends messengers for Christ into a day that you will never see. “When your generation has passed on to heaven, the children you invested in while serving in the nursery will carry the message you passed down to them,” Hudson boldly declares. “You are influencing future generations.”

Just know that if you serve in the nursery, you matter. Your work matters. The seeds you sow and water there will help to shape the future of your church. Nurture them, and watch God do amazing things.

 

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Faith

Argentine Photographer Captures INCREDIBLE Image of Christ-Like Cloud

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christ cloud

It cannot be denied that our world is in the midst of turmoil unlike anything we’ve seen in the past. From Birmingham to Beijing, we are seeing unprecedented poverty, crime, hate, violence, war, famine….you name it.  Combine these issues with a mainstream media who is salivating at the chance to rile us up for ratings and money, and the world becomes a downright scary place. Where do we turn when the world seems to shun us?  For some, the answers lie in the bottom of a bottle.  For others, it’s self-harm or outward violence. For many, however, their faith is their rock.  They turn to the religious world for answers to the questions that plague us today, and, often, they discover signs of encouragement. Such is the case today in Argentina. Monica Aramayo was in San Salvador de Jujuy in Argentina when she noticed the holy figure shining through the thick clouds Social media user Mariela Romano said: “The Lord will soon come for us all and we should be ready. While another said: “Thanks for the image that allows us to keep on our path and have a better hope for tomorrow.” The photo has to be seen to be believed. https://twitter.com/faithdefender/status/1128809009153097728 The pose and grand scale of the image has reminded many observers of the famous Christ The Redeemer statue in Brazil. https://twitter.com/OtravelAI/status/1082513665700507648 And while the cloud formation certainly isn’t going to change the minds of the unfaithful, it does provide us all with a reminder that we are loved, and we must remain harmonious with one another on this turbulent little space rock.

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Faith

Former Pope Blames ‘Swingin’ Sixties’ for Catholic Church’s Cesspool of Pedophilia

The Catholic Church is again attempting to blame their rampant pedophilia on the outside world.

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Pope Benedict

The high pontiffs of the Catholic Church would make fantastic dodgeball players. Given just how well they’ve avoided taking the blame for, or properly reacting to, the disturbing prevalence of pedophilia among their ranks, there is little doubt that these purposefully-ignorant would be able to dodge just about anything. The problem is obtuse, obvious, and ostensibly disgusting.  There are literally thousands upon thousands of young children who have been sexualized by Catholic priests over the course of several decades in all corners of the globe.  The problem is not isolated at all, and the only common factor between these horrific crimes is that they occurred at the hands of the Catholic Church. If the entire world got sick from eating a certain food, we would stop eating that food.  In the case of the Catholic Church, the children of the world are being undeniably harmed by their religious leaders in habitual and systemic acts of pedophilia, yet the leaders at The Vatican continue to ignore and obfuscate the truth. Now, one former Pope is even blaming the cultural revolution of the 1960’s for the issue. Emeritus Pope Benedict has emerged from his cone of silence to offer a personal analysis of the clerical sex abuse crisis, citing the sexual revolution, a corruption of moral theology, and the formation of “homosexual cliques” in seminaries as causes of the problem. Benedict says that he felt compelled to contribute to a response to the present situation “since I myself had served in a position of responsibility as shepherd of the Church at the time of the public outbreak of the crisis,” and so penned his reflections, obtaining the present pope’s blessing to make them public. In his new, 6,000-word bombshell essay, the former pope turns his gaze toward societal forces outside the Church as well as…

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