First Catechism for Young Children

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augustacarguy

Puritan Board Freshman
Our church is transitioning from Westminster shorter to this “First Catechism for Young Children.” Anyone familiar with this publication of the PCA?


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Smeagol

Puritan Board Senior
Our church is transitioning from Westminster shorter to this “First Catechism for Young Children.” Anyone familiar with this publication of the PCA?


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If your speaking about the GCP booklet with the picture of the little boy on the front, that is the booklet we use at church and at home.

We like it a lot. My 6 years old knows 100 and only has 50 to go!! We have started working with my 3 year old and she knows 17-20.

I have often benefited as an adult thinking about how well solid truths are expressed in so few words. So in catechizing my children, I also have catechized myself.

Once my oldest has the whole book memorized, I plan to attempt to memorize Westminster Shorter with my daughter.

If your not speaking about the GCP booklet, then I now realize I have wasted timeo_O
 
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Jack K

Puritan Board Doctor
The Children's or First Catechism (it's been published under both names) is an excellent little catechism aimed at young children. Highly recommended for that age group.

I could say more if I knew what you mean when you say your church is transitioning from one to the other. Those two catechisms are not really replaceable with each other. The Westminster Shorter was created to be manageable for kids, but it is robust enough to be used by adults as well. The Children's or First Catechism is much, much simpler and is clearly for children. Although I agree with Grant that adults can benefit from its simplicity and directness, I would hope that adults and older kids will also want more depth and expanded teaching.

I suspect a decision to replace the Shorter with the Children's would not have much to do with doctrine but rather with age-appropriateness, or learning levels, or the willingness of the users to commit significant time and effort. Maybe a church believes its kids would find the Children's more manageable or more understandable, so it decides to start using it in children's classes or to start recommending it to families rather than the Shorter. The wisdom of this would depend on the age of the kids involved and the ability/willingness of parents or teachers to work with them.

So the situation you have in mind matters. It would be a cause for concern if this transition is happening in the officer's training class, but a sign of wisdom if it is happening in the preschool classes. If the situation is something in between, there are probably pluses and minuses for the church leadership to consider.
 

augustacarguy

Puritan Board Freshman
Yes. I should’ve said it’s for the kids. The materials available for the new catechism is a major reason. I had just not heard of it.


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Jack K

Puritan Board Doctor
Yes. I should’ve said it’s for the kids. The materials available for the new catechism is a major reason. I had just not heard of it.


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If your church is using the Beginning Kids' Quest materials from Great Commission Publications, I would usually consider that a sign that they are taking solid theological training seriously. It's possible that stepping back from the Shorter Catechism represents a strategic retreat of sorts (perhaps they have found that families are not as diligent as they hoped, and so they are trying something a bit simpler), but the Children's Catechism is still a solid resource, and those materials are among the best available.
 

Ed Walsh

Puritan Board Senior
If your speaking about the GCP booklet with the picture of the little boy on the front, that is the booklet we use at church and at home.

Is this the one by GI Williamson? He's still alive by the way at 95.

 

Smeagol

Puritan Board Senior
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