A central task of the church must be to pass on and grow faith in every generation. This task of growing disciples works best when all generations learn, serve and grow together in community. Every generation has gifts that are important to the spiritual formation of others and each are woven together in relationship through a common identity in Christ, and common calling to serve the world. These ideas sits at the heart of intergenerational ministry.
Intergenerational ministry is an understanding of ministry that calls the church to engage in discipleship by intentionally building mutual and meaningful relationships between different and all generations.
It is important to recognise that intergenerational ministry is not a program that is added to what a congregations is already doing. Rather it is a way of being, a philosophy or mind set that is woven into the fabric of a congregation’s life.
As the church stands in a post Christendom world and, at the time of writing, Melbourne contends with Covid lockdown 4.0, it is important to recognise the task of cultivating an intergenerational ministry and relationships will look different, depending on a congregations ministry and missional context. These contexts in our Presbytery span from the inner city to the tip of the Mornington Peninsula, from the bay to the Dandenong Ranges. The Presbytery also encompasses some of the most culturally diverse communities in Australia. Growing intergenerational relationships within a CALD context has an additional layer of complexity, since it seeks to foster generational relationships based on age and stages of immigration, ie. first, second and third generations.
As congregational leaders, creating and nurturing intergenerational ministries will be challenging. However you are not alone in this endeavour. The Presbytery and Synod are partners in ministry. We seek to equip, encourage and resource you, as we together faithfully live out the call to be intergenerational communities, that has every generation woven together to become the church in all its fullness. May this website become an important resource that is added to your growing ministry toolkit as we serve the world together.
Intergenerational ministry – Young Adults Co-ordinator
eLM – equipping Leadership for Mission