Equipping Parents as the Primary Disciplers of Kids

The Scriptures make it clear that parents are called to instruct and raise children in the ways and truths of God. (Deuteronomy 6:4-9, 20-25, Proverbs 4:1-4, 10-13, 20-22, Ephesians 6:4) Parents clearly are primarily responsible for training children in how to live as followers of Jesus as part of the family of God and on the mission of God. Emmaus Church believes in coming alongside parents to help equip them to raise their children well.  Through the Emmaus Kids group on The City, every parent at Emmaus Church has access to weekly and monthly resources to help them disciple their children. From Bible stories to read, questions to ask, activities to do, songs to sing, thoughts to ponder, and more, these age-specific resources enable parents to introduce their children to the glorious truths of the gospel and their implications for their everyday lives.

On Gathered Sundays

On Scattered Sundays

Birth through Kindergarten

As a church family we have the great privilege of loving the kids of Emmaus, training them, and coming alongside their parents in introducing them to Jesus.  On Sunday’s when we gather corporately children (birth – kindergarten) will have the option of being a part of Emmaus Kids.  Emmaus Kids ministry is safe, fun, age-appropriate and is led by trained leaders and volunteers from our House Churches who serve, pray, teach, lead activities, sing and play with the kids.

Elementary Kids

At Emmaus Church one of our main values is integration.  While we offer a ministry to children ages birth-kindergarten, we deeply believe that involving children in the greater church family at the earliest logical age is VITAL. We place a high priority on encouraging children to worship with their parents, as well as encouraging parents to teach their children how to interact and participate in our corporate gatherings. Therefore, beginning in first grade we encourage parents to include children in our corporate gatherings. We have Busy Bags available at The City/House Church station for children attending gathered worship. In addition to activity books, chalk board and other items, there is an activity sheet which goes along with the sermon. After the service simply return the bag to one of the volunteers at The City/House Church station.

At Emmaus we love helping parents make the transition to having their children join our corporate gatherings. Below is an article containing 4 great reasons we believe parents should sit with their children during gathered worship.

4 Reasons Your Kids Should Sit with You on Sunday

On the last Sunday of each month we engage in what we call “Scattered Sundays.” Worship still happens on those Sundays just not in our meeting place with preaching and singing.  Instead we worship on Scattered Sundays through loving our neighbors, serving our city, and taking Sabbath together.  On Scattered Sundays we encourage parents to involve their children in appropriate ways.  We believe Scattered Sundays are outstanding opportunities to train children and instill in them the values of service to others and being on mission with God.  Even if children cause distraction, or a parent needs to repaint what their child just “painted,” worshiping together in these ways provides a beautiful picture of an intergenerational family striving to love our neighbors and seek the welfare of our city together.

Children in House Churches

How children engage in House Church is ultimately a communal decision for each House Church (some have a rotation of House Church members taking turns watching the kids, others pitch-in together for child-care, and still others include children in all activities and discussion).  Our encouragement is to involve children in as many things as are possible and appropriate: pray for and with them, celebrate significant events in their lives, and intentionally talk and listen to them.  If your group is serving a neighbor or throwing a party, for example, include the kids in whatever activities you’re doing. On nights you’re talking about God and life, involve kids in the discussion starting in elementary school.

Youth & College Students at Emmaus

Emmaus does not have a traditional youth or college ministry.  Because we value integration so highly we want youth and college age students to participate in Gathered Worship, Scattered Worship, and House Church with the rest of our church family.  However, for youth and college students, some of our encouragement towards attending a House Church based on proximity is lessened.  We encourage them to find a few other students to attend the House Church of their choosing with (pending the approval of their parents for Jr. High & High School students).  Additionally, Emmaus Church will also hold age-specific events for youth and college students throughout the year.