What is “The Domestic Church”?
Martin Luther called mothers and fathers the “pastors” of the household. Even when we are at home, we continue to be “the church.” The Domestic Church is simply a family in which the parents are trying hard to raise their little ones as Christians. In this “Domestic Church” section of the website, I (Pastor Mandy) share some ideas that I hope parents might find helpful. They’re easy, they’re not “programs”, and they’re fun.
Where did this idea come from? Back in 2007, I discovered that very few churches in our area were going to be offering a summer Bible School (!) On further investigation, I discovered that an increasing number of congregations in our area no longer even had Sunday School for children. I was flabbergasted! The children here at Holy Trinity are real little evangelists for Jesus; which is a good thing because so many of their little friends will learn about Jesus no other way. So how can the Church help their parents teach these children so that expressing their Christian faith will continue to be as natural to them as breathing? Strengthen the Domestic Church — and don’t make harried families have to go to one more meeting.
The Domestic Church is built around the Kitchen Table and the Family Room: Many families already use the kitchen table as a central place for household prayer. The center of that table could be a space set apart, perhaps with candles, and a “centerpiece” (creche, cross, artwork or craft) that can be a focus of prayer and devotion. Set aside regular times to read aloud from the Bible as a family, even if it is only a verse or two. Bring home the worship bulletin and use it during your family devotions. Make “church” not something that you go to, but something that you are. It is my hope that these pages will be a springboard for your own ideas!