My assignment was to write whether I agreed with this model based on the information supplied.
The Info Supplied:
Family-Integrated Model – “Proponents of family-integrated churches believe that ‘there is no scriptural pattern for comprehensive age-segregated discipleship, and that age-segregated practices are based on unbiblical, evolutionary and secular thinking which have invaded the church.’ . . . As a result, family-integrated congregations ‘reject the emphasis on family-fragmenting, facility-based programs which disregard the Church as a people in community and which displace family outreach.’ From a family integrated perspective, ‘the church’s relationships are nurtured primarily through daily discipleship in everyday life, especially fathers and mothers training their families to fulfill the great commission, living out the gospel in ministry to the saints and witness to the lost’” (Jones, p. 23–24)
I believe that a family integrated model is the appropriate model to use for family ministry. I know from my own life that I was ready for older classes in Sunday School long before I was allowed to move up. Holding me back stunted me from learning all about Christ and the Bible that I was capable of learning. I believe that holding a student back just because of age is the wrong thing to do. We need to be working with each student individually and addressing their needs.
I agree that many churches take their lead from schools. Secular schools limit you to certain grades and do not group based upon ability. In the church environment we should be leading our children to explore and ask questions. IF we are doing that then the students will reach beyond the basic classes that are taught as ‘age appropriate’.
Parents should be daily involved in the spiritual development of their children. Of primary leadership should fall to the father. This was God’s intention and fathers need to accept the role. This is not to deemphasize the role the mother plays but they e to have different roles. The father is given he task of overseeing the whole family and mothers are given responsibility to fill in the roles that need to be filled either because the father won’t or cant.
Setting examples of how to live a Godly life is the primary purpose of the parents. Children in the beginning learn primarily from modeling. Parents should provide a model that kids can emulate not simply follow. When a kids sees the parent witnessing and reaching out they will develop skills in this area and learn to reach out as well. Also since the kids are part of worship services they again gain a modeling opportunity; the children see their parents worshiping and praising God and so learn to act appropriately for their age and learn how to worship and interact with God.