Since 2015, the North Texas Conference has partnered with Rev. Dr. Leanne Hadley to offer the A Time for Children children’s ministry cohorts, which have trained and supported children’s ministry workers across the conference.
Rev. Hadley’s U-Shaped model of ministry, or God-centered Spiritual Transformation, structures and simplifies gatherings like Sunday School or small groups to move from surface-level activity to deep spiritual reflection and connection. We have expanded this model into youth groups and intergenerational gatherings, and seen over and over again the spiritual transformation that occurs with intentional scriptural reflection, from preschool students to senior citizens. We invite groups of all ages to explore utilizing the U-Shaped model when reflecting on scripture, books or videos.
Introduction: Joys and concerns, personal catch up, announcements
Topic Introduction: Present subject for study (scripture/book passage/lecture/etc) – What questions do you want answered?
Reflection: Give time for internal reflection, inviting participants to hear what God is saying to each of them. You can use a tool like listening stones, drawing or journaling, or looking at pictures. Any activity done intentionally could help a person move deeper into the heart of God.
Discussion time: Facilitate time for people to share what they have discovered during their reflection.
Integration: After discussion, an integration activity (hiking, knitting, cooking, etc) allows the content to continue processing. This activity can be explicitly topical, or more open, but should be participated in the spirit of the God-centered gathering, and helps to more deeply integrate the reflections into a person’s being.
Closing and blessing: Ending time together in a ritual that recognizes everyone’s sacred worth allows the time to be prayerfully closed, and sends people back into the world knowing God is speaking to them and they are loved.
To learn more about A Time for Children/Youth click here