Today marks the beginning of a new journey with our 18-year-old daughter.  On this sunny Sunday morning, I’m going to accompany her to a different church.  It is an effort to find a place of worship for her, more attuned to her faith and beliefs than her parent’s church.    

For us, her parent’s, it marks the beginning of our youngest making a decided step toward her own faith journey.  As the daughter of two ministers, she has followed in tow as we have served in various churches.  In the last year or so, it has come to our attention that our church, as wonderful as it may be for us, is not what she would choose, if she were free to choose on her own – and so begins a new leg of her spiritual journey.

In the weeks ahead, I will step out of my role as minister’s wife, choir member, etc., and attend to this journey with my daughter.  I will explain various differences within the Christian context – what it means to be Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, etc.  And I will help her to understand the deeper aspects of worship.  It’s easy to focus on outward appearances, even in church – how the music sounds, how well the preacher preaches, and so on… 

But what about other issues – deeper issues?  What is their understanding of salvation?  How do they put Christ’s words into action?  How is their church governed?  What is their opinion of women in ministry (which shows their theology toward women)?  These are a few of the issues I look forward to discussing with my daughter.

Synopsis thus far:

Week 1 – Attended a good size (not small but not a mega-church) traditional Presbyterian service with a vast majority of the congregation being over 60.  Warm and extraordinarily friendly folks, with great music and meaningful worship.  Worship style – traditional.  Daughter especially enjoyed the responsive readings and participatory style of Presbyterian worship (she gets that from her mom).

Week 2 – Attended a Methodist service in our own community – small congregation.  In the entire service we were greeted and sort of welcomed by one person.  However, I loved the emphasis on the prayers of the congregation.  It seemed to fit perfectly with Christ’s admonition that His house should be a “house of prayer.”  Very few young people, and the few that were in attendance were not engaged in the service.  Focused on “Cub Scout Sunday,” and due to Valentines Day coming up in the next week, had a responsive reading that was…well…romantic – from Song of Solomon.  Seemed very strange…lots of giggling during the reading. Hmmmm… Worship style – extremely traditional. 

Week 4 – (Week 3, no visit due to illness).  Attended a bit more charismatic church with a good history of solid Bible teaching and worship.  Extremely contemporary – felt more like a rock concert than worship…although the printed lyrics up on the big screens were right on, the music was difficult to follow, and as my son used to say, “scared my ears.”  The highlight of the service was the sermon – excellent teaching on how to best interpret scripture.

Week 5 – Visited a Baptist Church with ties to the Cooperative Baptist Church, (with more egalitarian views on women in ministry, and in general)  – 11:00 contemporary worship…excellently done.  Beautiful church, beautiful music – the friendliest congregation we’ve visited.  And the worship service itself fed our spirits and allowed us, as visitors, to join in the worship.  Lots of young people who were actively engaged in worship – sitting in the front pews, going to the altar for prayer, going out of their way to speak to my daughter…very outgoing youth ministers, actively pursuing Bethany’s presence in their worship, Bible study and missions events.  Will probably visit again…

Still on this journey with my daughter…  Praying for God to work in her life and show her the next step.   

More to come…

Kim W. Chafee








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Kim Chafee

I am a lover of the God who sings! I am a Christ-follower and an ordained minister married to the other Rev. Chafee (Scott), with two grown children and a multitude of pets. And, I love chocolate. Read more about me and the reason for this blog on my ABOUT page.

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