But it reminded me afresh of an important issue.
How often do we focus on the needs of primary-aged kids, the tweens and the teens, and neglect that vital ministry area- babies and toddlers? While it's been noted that 'investing in the education of three and four year-olds returns nine times the investment', the initial years, the babies and infants to 2-years, are also crucial periods of learning and discovery.
So.. how are we supporting families with infants? What encouragement is offered to parents who often feel they lack any concept of initiating faith training with these little ones. How do we connect with the mums and dads who wonder why they make the effort to come to church when they spend most of the time in the mother's room or creche? How do we break the isolation many feel throughout the week?
With this in mind, we are slowly developing an Ages & Stages area on the website that will list the developmental characteristics of various age-groups, including babies and infants, with a growing list of age-appropriate resources for families and ministries.
We have started with Infants, and if you know of additional resources to add to our list, please let us know. I have also included a downloadable Family Manual that you may find useful. Simply print the pages of the manual, which provides information for parents about monthly milestones for their new baby and some helpful faith-nurturing suggestions, and pop them into an attractive folder to hand to families with young babies. You can download the manual below.