Luther on Marriage and Family ‘Marriage … is the source of both the family and the state, and the nursery of the church.’
‘Married people … can do no better work and do nothing more valuable either for God, for Christendom, for all the world, for themselves, and for their children than to bring up their children well. … For bringing up their children properly is their shortest road to heaven. In fact, heaven itself could not be made nearer or achieved more easily than by doing this work.’
‘In the Christian doctrine, in which, after the doctrine of the Gospel and faith, we teach how we should conduct ourselves in a godly and honorable manner in this life, marriage is the first and chief thing; for it is the beginning and origin of the whole life.’
7 Practical Strategies for Family Faith Formation
#1 - Connect Sunday Morning with Monday-Saturday in the Home • Make Sunday morning a time for resourcing families. • The 4 Keys: faith talk, devotional practices, rituals and traditions, service. • Provide “At home” pieces.
“Taking Faith Home” www.formingfaith.com
#2 - Use the Seasons of the Church Year to Help Families Live Faith-fully • Advent, Lent or Pentecost Workshops. • Seasonal family devotional resources. • “Make it easy for them”.
#3 - Use Baptisms and Marriages as Key Strategic Opportunities • Use baptismal preparation to give parents guidance and resources. • Use marriage preparation to help couples think about the future “shape” of their family life.
#4 - Build and Parent and Family Dimensions into First Communion and Confirmation Preparation • Introduce “parent” nights into your instruction programs. • Bring together kids and parents – help them “do the faith” with one another.
#5 - Make Worship Child and Parent Friendly • Provide aids for parents who worship with children. • Educate parents about worshipping with children. • Give attention to the “senses” in worship. • Recruit “pew parents”.
#6 - Be Proactive in Caring for Marriages • Follow-up on married couples each year. • Use the Alpha “Marriage Preparation Course”. • Offer “Parents Nights Out”. • Look at marriage mentoring.