Spring 1993 · Vol. 22 No. 1 · p. 2 

From the Editors: Christian Nurture in the Church

Elmer A. Martens

Christian education is a topic larger than Sunday School. Bob Rempel, a standard bearer of that thesis, urges that attention be given to the curriculum not alone for Sunday School classes but for the entire congregation. As it is, much of the instruction and nurture is fragmented and often unfocused. Is anyone (person or committee) out there overseeing a plan that will maximize the church’s educational components for Christian growth?

The urgency of the “nurture question” is quickly driven home by the helpful analysis Ron Penner gives of the way things are in the Mennonite Brethren Church. Penner selects from the book which documents the extensive research of 1989, The Mennonite Mosaic, and helpfully offers a bite-sized package for ready reference and planning. Current practitioners in the field of Christian nurture bring us into their world via a round-table discussion—a new genre in our publication. The issues quickly come alive, not only in this conversation by a good cross-section of leaders, but by Gayle Goossen’s metaphor-oriented article. David Wiebe singles out one issue: children and church ordinances.

From the local church Norm Rempel catapults us into the world of Bible colleges. Courses in Bible are clearly the staple menu. To what extent should courses in general education (i.e. the liberal arts, literature, sociology, etc.,) be included in the menu? Rempel’s research is important data for educators.

A large vote of thanks is due Dr. Bob Rempel, coordinator/editor of the theme articles! Rempel recently completed doctoral studies in the field of Christian education. Direction is grateful to you, Bob.

A missionary/educator and a theologian address questions that most would rather disregard: suffering as a factor in the missionary effort, and, closer to home, the church’s stance to persons with AIDS.

Direction’s fall issue on the general subject of Church Music and Worship will be guest-anchored by Dr. Larry Warkentin of Fresno Pacific College.