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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Liturgy with little ones

First step: have some hymnals handy

I have a memory—perhaps it’s of one particular Sunday. More likely, it’s a collection of many Sundays rolled into one. I’m 4 or 5 years old and in church with my family. Everyone is singing the liturgy—so am I.

A few years ago I returned to the church of my childhood—this time with my husband and two children. The music and some of the words had changed, but the repetitive order felt comforting, secure and purposeful.

One Sunday during worship while comforting my infant son in the church library, I noticed the Sunday school hymnal from my childhood. Opening it, I had a powerful revelation: It was no accident that I knew the liturgy at a young age. Caring adults in my congregation wanted children—wanted me—to learn the liturgy.

This was the impetus for teaching my children and others the liturgy (see “My View,” page 11 in the print edition). Liturgy and little ones do go together. After all, their lives are also about routines, rituals and rhythm.


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