Piloting New Curriculum
Sunday School has become an age-old tradition that in many churches has failed to capture the imagination and buy0in of the students. By the time the children are 12 or 13, they figure they have heard all of the stories, and they know that God forgives their sins and Jesus loves them. Curricula that focus on memorizing Bible verses tend to hold the children's attention a little longer, but without a call to action outside this memorization, these children fall away from their relationship with Christ in their college years and early adult life when they are too busy to continue memorizing verses. With a more alchemical curriculum, Sunday School becomes a means of understanding the next leg of their spiritual journey and fellow questers on that same journey. It's not a competition, it's about community, the quest for true transformation, and celebrating successes as the children move through that journey.
Ultimately, the curriculum will be a seven year cycle, where each year focuses on helping the student master the element they are working on. Students begin with Mastery of Earth - understanding who they are as a part of God's chosen people and discover what other religions teach. Mastery of Water includes understanding ancient Biblical texts (basics), as well as the Baptismal covenant. Mastery of Air focuses first on the gifts of the Spirit, but attempts to create a process for the students to begin producing the fruits of the spirit. Mastery of Fire includes more difficult concepts such as transfiguration, and symbolism. Lastly, discussions around the Philosopher's Stone include in-depth analysis of the Eucharist and what transformation is: transfiguration or transubstantiation.
To see a sample of this new curriculum, click here for the first lesson: Earth: Session One – The Family Tree