16. Sunday

Although the opening of this clip is a bit masterpiece theatre, the video itself profiles a very interesting approach to religious education.  Godly Play and Catechesis of the Good Shepherd are both examples of a non-traditional approach to the spiritual development of children.  Both come out of the Christian religious tradition.

Godly Play describes itself as “a non-coercive way to encourage people to move into larger dimensions of belief and faith through wondering questions and open-ended response time.”

Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (GGS) explains, “if an adult hears a beautiful passage from the Bible, the adult might take a Bible, find the passage, and read it slowly again and again. He or she may think deeply about the words and perhaps speak to God in a thankful or hopeful prayer. But a little child, too young to read, needs another way. In an atrium the child can ponder a biblical passage or a prayer from the liturgy by taking the material for that text and working with it – placing wood figures of sheep in a sheepfold of the Good Shepherd, setting sculpted apostles around a Last Supper table, or preparing a small altar with the furnishings used for the Eucharist.” For those interested in seeing CGS in action,  this clip provides a look inside what they call an atrium (which is a classroom prepared for CGS).

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4 thoughts on “16. Sunday

  1. I enjoyed watching this video.

    My son, who has been a Montessori child since 3, and a classmate ran a lenten program at our church based on Godly Play materials. This was when they were 10 and 11. They made the practical life materials, worked out the storytelling, interacted with parents and adult church staff. I was on site but did not stay in the room. They were able to lead these children to be more physically self-sufficient as well as to think about God not just be told about Him.

    1. Wow! What an incredible experience for them! It sounds like they were really moved to “teach” as they have been “taught” by providing an environment for younger children to find their own way to God. Hats off to them and to you for facilitating your son’s independence. How does he talk about the experience now?

  2. Fascinating! Love the concept of this – sorta like school – if you get them to interact and really love it, it will mean more.

    1. I know I would love to see it in real life! I am so curious about it! Godly Play seems most common at Episcopal churches…

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