You might well be familiar with the axiom: each new generation has to lay claim to the Christian tradition for themselves. This complicated task involves becoming deeply familiar with the religious, spiritual and ethical dimensions of faith. Familiarity with the religious dimension is developed over a lifetime of attending church where one learns the Creeds, hears the Old and New Testaments and participates in the Holy Eucharist. Spiritual formation within our tradition starts at a young age with the cultivation of wonder, wondering and wisdom, as well as a relational spirituality of binding one’s own well-being with the well-being of others. The ethical dimension can only be grasped by struggling with the meaning of one’s life and morality with the hope that each new generation becomes caring, compassionate and reflexively rejects selfishness, the disregard of others, and injustice.
As part of the restoration of parish life post-pandemic, the vestry commissioned a review of how we can more fully help our children and youth to lay claim to Christian faith through the formation and education received at St. Barnabas. The results of this review are summarized in a two-page report attached as a PDF here. I hope that parents, in particular, will find it both hopeful and helpful. I am very grateful to Jamie Martin-Currie of JMC Consulting for her insights and practical recommendations at this time of renewal in the life our church.
Onward in the Spirit,
Gareth Evans serves as the rector of St. Barnabas. He is an inspirational leader who brings significant pastoral experience, a depth of reverence in worship, and a relatable preaching style.