A word from Premier Childrenswork co-editor Sam Donoghue
If you have the deep joy of following me on Twitter you will know that the background of my page is a picture of a ‘Big Yellow Tea Pot’. If you’re of the right age you’ll instantly know what one of these is and be lost in a wave of childhood memories. If you’re not with me on this I should explain it was a plastic, yellow tea pot that was about eighteen inches across and had contained a small play house for plastic figures. It had a red front door and on the back a huge door you could open to get inside that was very vulnerable to being snapped off, any way, you get the idea.
As a child I owned a Big Yellow Tea Pot and when I grew out of it my Mum donated it to the crèche at our church. It became a childhood memory of mine as every week when I went out for Sunday school I would see it with another generation of children being annoyed that you couldn’t fit the figures that came with it down the spout. In the end I was too old for Sunday school and then went off for a year out, university and then a job. When I returned a few years later many things about the church had changed but one thing hadn’t: my Big Yellow Tea Pot remained, minus its doors.
It seemed to me to be saying something about the way children were viewed in the church. The tea pot was ok so every week it was put out and played with; nobody seemed to be asking the question of ‘is this the best we can do for our children?’. We need to do better than this; we know now that there is a foundation of faith being built in these early years that we need to positively engage with so that the children in our groups grow up knowing nothing else but God involved in their lives and having a faith that makes a positive difference beyond Sunday.
I’m really excited about the potential that this magazine has to support those of us who work tirelessly for children in our churches. Hopefully we’ll be able to expose you to some new ideas from some of the leading thinkers in our field. I’m so glad to have Ivy Beckwith writing in the first edition as she represents someone who is leading the way by asking what our methods our doing towards the spiritual formation of the children in our groups.
What we do as children’s workers is important so I hope this magazine will be something that inspires you, challenges you and helps you make a positive difference to the lives of the children that God has given you the privilege of nurture in their faith.
Sam Donoghue is Premier Childrenswork magazine's co-editor, alongside Martin Saunders.