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Dear parents with young children in church

Dear parents with young children in church

“That mom” writes in the blog I am totally *that* mom encouraging parents who bring young children to worship services:

You are doing something really, really important. I know it’s not easy. I see you with your arms overflowing, and I know you came to church already tired. Parenting is tiring. Really tiring.

I watch you bounce and sway trying to keep the baby quiet, juggling the infant carseat and the diaper bag as you find a seat. I see you wince as your child cries. I see you anxiously pull things out of your bag of tricks to try to quiet them. And I see you with your toddler and your preschooler. I watch you cringe when your little girl asks an innocent question in a voice that might not be an inside voice let alone a church whisper. I hear the exasperation in your voice as you beg your child to just sit, to be quiet as you feel everyone’s eyes on you. Not everyone is looking, but I know it feels that way.

I know you’re wondering, is this worth it? Why do I bother? I know you often leave church more exhausted than fulfilled. But what you are doing is so important.

Read why it is so important here.


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Sara Copeland

I feel very fortunate that our parish has been so welcoming of our children, who seem to have ended up being on the leading edge of a little baby boom. Early on, I certainly felt some pressure to keep our oldest quiet and well-behaved – and I soon realized that the pressure to do that was all in my own head, remembering how my sister and I were expected to behave as children. It really warms my heart to see how people interact with my children in church – they shake their hands at the peace, smile and talk to them, and yes, they laugh when the kids say something funny in the middle of a quiet moment. These are the things that make a parish feel like family. We are doing our level best to teach our kids about worship and reverence, but we have to rely on others to help teach them about community. We feel pretty lucky about the people who are helping us with those lessons. (Major love for Grace & Holy Trinity in Kansas City!)

Leslie Scoopmire

When my kids were very young, we were lucky to find a worship service that didn’t care if kids were grumpy or excited or needing feeding. Also found plenty of services where that was NOT the case.

I love hearing the noise of children when I am worshipping and when I am preaching. Ask those questions! Sing those songs! How else are they ever going to see church as a place that loves them?

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