There is nothing more distracting than attempting to worship in the middle of a congregation filled with boisterous and rowdy kids, and there is nothing more embarrassing than being the parent of one of these children. Although most attendees will agree that it is very important to keep children quiet at religious services, it is not always the easiest thing to do. The following best practices can help a parent keep their children quiet and at the same time allow themselves and others to focus on the sermon or the service.
Older children should be expected to stay quiet without any type of activity during the entire service. Sometimes it is necessary to explain that their noise is very disrespectful to both the pastor and the other members of the congregation. If an older child does not successfully stay quiet, they should certainly be punished once the service is over.
Younger children may find it very difficult to sit still for a long period of time, and it is absolutely acceptable to bring quiet activities along that can help entertain these kids. There are many different types of activities that will work for this purpose, but the most popular is coloring. Many parents find it more acceptable to bring a picture Bible or some type of religious book for the children to read. In addition, some churches have made a routine practice out of providing the younger children with paper and activity books to help keep them quiet.
There are often many children that simply are not old enough to behave appropriately in church, but the good news is that there are typically nurseries available for these kids. Many of the nursery programs at religious facilities even provide some type of instruction that promotes creativity and fun.
Babies are often brought into religious services by their mothers, but this can sometimes prove to be very distracting to other worshippers. If a baby begins to cry, they should immediately be removed from the service so as not to disturb or disrupt anyone.
Many churches have found that it is often easier to keep children quiet at religious services if they are included in some way. Most religious services incorporate a children's moment into their service that will allow the kids to get up and listen to a short lesson directly from the pastor. Children should be encouraged to participate in the singing and other ceremonious worshipping in the service, and this often helps keep them quiet as well.
Religious services are designed to be enjoyed by the whole family, but unruly children can definitely prove to be entirely too distracting to the congregation. Parents must accept responsibility for the actions of their kids and must be proactive in taking these measures to keep their children quiet.