We have determined in our hearts and with our actions at South Hills that child dedications will no longer be just in passing during a weekend service. Instead, it will be met with great expectation from the parents and celebrated with family and friends.
Traditionally, child dedications are done during a normal weekend church service. Let’s first say, that there is nothing wrong with this, especially if it’s all you can do as a result of limited space, staffing, etc. Something is better than nothing. We launched a Child Dedication Celebration experience to celebrate the commitment parents are making before God and others. We have done this to highlight the parent’s role and let them know that this is a big deal.
How we don’t view dedications:
1. We don’t view child dedications as an afterthought. It’s thought out and planned out thoroughly with team members who believe in it 110%.
2. We don’t view child dedications as a fill-in or waste of time. Child dedications are extremely important. It’s not easy to stand in front of God and your peers pledging to do your very best as a parent to raise your kids according to the Bible and to help kids cultivate a relationship with their Creator.
3. We don’t view child dedications as a certificate. I’ve seen child dedication classes where all that is discussed is the service flow and a child’s proper spelling of their name. It’s much more than that. This is an opportunity to speak into their lives and let them know what God expects from them as a parent and what they can expect from God in return.
4. We don’t view child dedications as just a children’s ministry thing. We have several ministries involved. It’s a church-wide event. It’s not up to the children’s ministry to raise children—it’s up to the parents. This is why we resource them, love and support them, and equip them to God’s highest calling.
5. We don’t view child dedications as a pray and go thing. We view child dedications as a partnership. This church is going to partner with parents to help them be the best they can be. We are here to support, cheerlead, encourage and do what it takes.