Kelly says, “And children ARE Special, because they are our future. If we don’t engage our youth, they will not stay, or come back, or be invested in our faith as adults.”
This is where I fundamentally disagree with current UU thinking. I believe the future is now and that as long as you don’t engage the ADULTS, there is no real chance to really engage the children. UUs do religious education of children fairly well (of course things can always be/get better), it’s the adults that are not fully engaged in the ongoing spiritual development that is required to be a mature person. And let’s face it…..if the parents are not fully engaged in spiritual development, then it’s going to be really hard to keep their children engaged because most spiritual development happens OUTSIDE of church. If the church is not helping the parents (and other adults who are around) figure out what they believe, how are they going to be able to help their children figure out what they believe?
This is why I believe children are not special. At least not in or of themselves. Adults are special too. And until UUs figure that out, we’ll have more children in RE than adults in the pew. And that’s a recipe for disaster.