For the first time, parents in the Christian Reformed Church have a free, downloadable resource that gives them a road map for helping build the faith of their children at home.
Called DWELL at Home, the resource is an outgrowth of DWELL Digital, the online extension of the time-tested and popular DWELL Children’s Ministry Curriculum. DWELL Digital came out last summer, and DWELL at Home was released in late 2019.
“The major focus of DWELL at Home is to meet families where they are,” said Jill Benson, coordinator of the DWELL program.
Families are busy, and this new resource gives them the room and options for faith formation to “happen in all of the little moments of life,” she said.
In an overview of the program on the DWELL at Home website, Traci Smith, author of Faithful Families: Creating Sacred Moments at Home, says: “Faith is learned as it is woven seamlessly into the fabric of daily life.”
With this idea in mind, DWELL at Home provides tip sheets to encourage and equip families as they nurture faith in the familiar surroundings of where they live. Rather than adding yet another to-do item to busy lives, these tip sheets can become part of the daily and weekly rhythms of any family.
“The DWELL at Home series of resources are designed to encourage and equip parents (or) caregivers to live into and out of their faith with children in ways that are as natural as breathing,” said Karen DeBoer, creative resource developer for Faith Formation Ministries.
DWELL at Home offers tools for families with children to help form such practices as praying, worshiping, wondering about God’s world, and reading the Bible.
“We hope churches will print and give them to families, post them on their church website, use them as bulletin inserts, and share them in whatever way works in their context,” DeBoer said.
One of the most popular DWELL at Home resources so far has been Jesse Tree: God’s Big Advent Story (bit.ly/2tUpOqe). Viewed over 4,500 times, it’s been used by churches and families around the globe.
“We’re thrilled at the way in which these resources are being used around the world and the opportunities that provide for churches to experience another part of the great approach to faith nurture that’s found in the DWELL curriculum,” DeBoer said.
Easily accessible and shareable, the tip sheets in DWELL at Home include “5 Ways to Help Your Family Grow in Faith,” “5 Ways to Pray with Kids,” “5 Ways to Help Kids Worship,” “5 Ways to Retell a Bible Story to Kids,” “5 Ways to Wonder with Kids,” and “5 Ways to Bring Children’s Ministry Home.”
“These resources come out of what we’ve learned from research, family workshops, and youth leaders about how they struggle about how to pass on the faith to children,” Benson said. “We believe these are wonderful ways to reach each of your children right where they are on their journey of faith.”