A Shift Toward Intergenerational Ministry in the Reformed Church?

Posted by Liz Perraud at

In June 2018, a committee of the Presbyterian Church (USA) (the General Assembly’s Special Committee to Study the Reformed Perspective of Christian Education in the 21st Century), made a recommendation to the PC (USA)’s 223rd General Assembly.

Of particular importance to GenOn Ministries, are the following recommendations:

“To encourage an adjustment to a shift in Christian Education paradigms and practices over the last several decades to support the restructuring, resourcing, and staffing of the ministry area of Christian Formation, working to de-emphasize age and stage Christian Education, and instead focus on lifelong Christian Education and Faith Formation, especially intergenerational ministry.”

“To advise the Committee on Theological Education (COTE) to encourage Presbyterian seminaries to offer some Christian Education and Faith Formation courses that specifically address intergenerational ministry.”

The committee’s study showed that intergenerational ministry

  • Is thriving in diverse settings
  • Is a model that church leaders see as the future
  • Can thrive regardless of church size or finances
  • Is a sustainable model of ministry, even for small churches

Their findings indicated that current research trends now “emphasize holistic understanding of life-long faith formation and spiritual practice, noting the limits of only age-segregated, classroom style education.”

They conclude by encouraging congregations “to continue to move toward an intergenerational model of Christian Education and Faith Formation that involves the teaching and learning of Scripture just as much as it involves discipleship in the world combined with reflection and prayer.”

Read the full report here.

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