Posted July 7, 2008on:
Today I visited Malmesbury Abbey. It was very nice to wander round this ancient, beautiful, crumbling building and get the clear impression that it is still home to a congregation who are a living expression of the body of Christ. Everywhere, visitors were pointed not only to items of historical interest, but also to the features of the church that express the gospel. Scripture verses were prominently displayed and explained. Tucked away upstairs was a permanent exhibition including a very beautiful 4-volume mediaeval illuminated bible and a first edition of Luther’s commentary on Galatians.
I was particularly struck by the prominently displayed ‘Children’s Charter’ which the nice lady at the door was happy to give me a copy of (for the bargain price of 50p).
1. As a family we should take every opportunity to share Christian life together.
2. There is a need for regular prayer for the whole family of the church.
3. The discovery and development of gifts in adults and children is a key function in the church.
4. Learning is for the whole church, adults and children.
5. Children need to be taught why to go to church.
6. Principles of communion and confirmation need to be taught from the early years.
7. The full diet of Christian worship is for children as well as adults.
8. Fellowship is for all, each belonging meaningfully to the rest.
9. Service is for children to give, as well as adults.
10. Children are equal partners with adults in the life of the church.
I especially like 4, 7 and 8.
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