HTS Theological Studies
On-line version ISSN 2072-8050
Print version ISSN 0259-9422
BREED, Gert and KRUGER, Ferdi P.. A practical-theological reflection on coaching and equipping children for service as a way to emulating the attitude of Christ. Herv. teol. stud. [online]. 2014, vol.70, n.2, pp.01-11. ISSN 2072-8050.
The hypothesis for this research is that the youth is an inherent part of the church. The church, which includes the children, received spiritual gifts from God. The edification of the church is the main purpose in the utilisation of all the gifts. The church received a significant responsibility in equipping and convoying children to be obedient in their calling to be followers of Jesus Christ. Parents and children must use their gifts for their own diakonia. The word diakonia gives expression to the fact that diakonia must take place in accordance to the calling by God. In recent research the expression diakonia also received a more comprehensive meaning. The research field will be explored in four phases and, in doing so, try to come to grips with the current practical-theological situation. In phase one the authors tried to offer a descriptive reflection on research in the practical theology. In phase two the authors undertook exploratory research from the field of the social psychology in order to indicate the prominent role of wrong attitudes and insufficient convoying of children in the praxis. Therefore the authors undertook an intra-disciplinary conversation with the development psychology. In phase three the authors offered basic-theoretical perspectives from Scripture in order to show how the praxis must be. In the last phase of this research practical-theoretical perspectives are explored in order to underline the responsibility of churches in this regard of equipping children in fulfilling their own diakonia. The authors drew a conclusion from their research that children who serve in diakonia and also in obedience to Christ, are also people that are enabled to show the attitude of Jesus Christ towards the world. Parents and other believers must serve in mentoring children. By mentoring children in their diakonia, they enable children and also contribute towards spiritual maturity in their lives.