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Opportunities for Faith Conversations
Prepared by: Gertie Gatzke

Planning Theme: Opportunities to share faith abound, but we need to be prepared to take advantage of them.

Target Audience: Parents, grandparents, extended family, friends, youth

Objectives: Through "faith talk", participants will be able to :

  • See questions as opportunities for sharing faith and for learning.
  • Recognize other opportunities for sharing faith.
  • Share their faith more readily with others.

Time required: 90 minutes

Materials or Resources (required or *recommended)

  • Name tags
  • Newsprint
  • Felt pens
  • Bibles
  • "Faith Talk" resource (Augsburg Youth and Family Institute)
  • "That Reminds Me" resource (Augsburg Publishers)
  • "Faith Journey Scrapbook Gameboard" (from Seeking and Sharing Faith Stories 1993 ELCIC)

Welcome, Introductions and Greetings: (5–10 minutes)

  • Leader: introduce yourself, sharing one expression of how faith was passed on to you (depending on the size of the group you may want participants to introduce themselves).
  • Introduce the topic, reading the objectives. e.g. "Conversations, sometimes begun with questions, almost always bring us into some kind of relationship with others. What we will look at in this workshop is how we can respond to questions in such a way that the faith is passed on to our children, whatever the age, family members, and our friends. Recognizing that it is the Holy Spirit who gives us faith, we want to do our part as planters and/or waterers."


ProcessE–Experience (5 minutes)

Ask the large group: "What opportunities do we have for forming relationships and passing on the faith?"

List on newsprint the answers of the group

  • times/places when the questions are most likely asked. (around the dinner table, trips in the car, quiet time with children, walks, doing the dishes, bedtime).
  • the people who will ask the questions (children, siblings, parents, friends, etc)


I–Identify
(20 minutes)

Break into groups of 4 to discuss the following questions:

  1. What is the earliest recollection of "faith questions" that you asked?
  2. What is the earliest recollection of "faith questions" that you were asked?
  3. What faith questions do your children, other family members or friends ask?


A–Analyze
(20 minutes)

In small groups, share stories of:

  1. A time that the opportunity arose to share your faith and you missed the chance.
  2. A time that the opportunity arose to share your faith and the right words were there.
  3. How you felt in each of these situations.


G–Generalize
(20 minutes)

Spend time looking at some conversation starters with "Faith Talk" cards. In groups of four, answer the question on the cards. In the large group, point out some other resources.


T–Theologize (15 minutes)

Deuteronomy 6:4-9, Deuteronomy 4:9 and Deuteronomy 11:19
are good words of encouragement for us who see faith talk as important in the lives of families an individuals. Let's see what those passages teach us about sharing faith

Jesus was always open to questions that were asked of him. His answers brought most people into relationship with him.

Read:

  • Matthew 18:21–34
  • Matthew 19:16–26
  • John 1:38–39
  • John 3: 1–7
  • John 4:7–15

Ask: Who asked a question? What was the question? How did the answer affect that person's faith?

Look at 2 Timothy 1:5. Paul talks of Timothy's sincere faith that lived first in his grandmother, his mother and now lives in him. How was that faith passed on to Timothy? Do you suppose he asked questions of his mother Eunice, or his grandmother Lois? Very likely Paul also answered many of his questions when it came to faith life.


Conclusion
Pray together for the wisdom and courage to share your faith when opportunities arise. Allow time to look at resources.

Send home a copy of "Faith Journey Scrapbook" game-board and instructions
(Appendix A).



Permission is granted to reproduce this module for use in ELCIC congregations. Any other use requires copyright permission. Please contact bfast@elcic.ca.

In full communion with The Anglican Church of Canada
© Copyright 2007 Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada