Awana

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Atonement, Sep 2, 2006.

  1. Atonement

    Atonement
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    Sorry there is not a search feature to see if this topic has been discussed.. My daughter just turned 5yrs old and I would like to put her in Awana, however I lack the knowledge of Awana, meaning I know very little about it. Could someone explain alittle more about Awana, and what they teach our children, etc? Thank You
     
  2. FBCPastorsWife

    FBCPastorsWife
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    I don't support the Awana program because from what I have seen recently with local churches they seemed to have drifted away from what they once were. My main issue with them is they used to be KJV and now they have integrated the NIV and NKJV. That may not matter to you. That's just my view of it.

    I know that many children enjoy the program if it is done correctly and is in a church that has enough adults to run the program.

    You might find some answers to your questions at www.awana.org
     
  3. Bro Tony

    Bro Tony
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    Atonement,

    Welcome to the Baptist Board.

    Our church has an Awana program. It is a great program to get the children into the Bible at their own age level. The children memorize Scripture and are taught application. Awana stresses the meaning of the passages and the leaders try to be aware of when the children are ready to respond to the Lord's call on their life. Our church loves it and opens it up to the whole community. How can children learning and memorizing Scripture not be good?

    Again, God bless and welcome.

    Bro Tony
     
  4. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O.
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    We do AWANA at our church. I don't personally work in it because I have many other duties.

    But the adults who work there all agree it is wonderful.

    The basic purpose is scripture memorization. They do have games and a "store", but most of the time is spent in bible study and one-on-one child/adult scripture recitations.

    The adults who work in AWANA memorize the scriptures, too.

    The children recite some of their scriptures at the end of the year at the closing service.

    The parents are held accountable because they have to help their child memorize verses. We have had some unchurched adults get saved and join our church because their unchurched child was invited to our AWANA club and all of a sudden.....what do you know.....the bible is being read and discussed in those homes.

    It's not a perfect organization....but neither is the church. But from what I see of children learning God's Word and hiding it in their hearts....I like it.
     
  5. Atonement

    Atonement
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    Thank you for responding to this thread. I love the KJV I have two I use all the time, but, I also use the NKJV and I perfer it. I would NEVER stop or disapprove my daughter of going because the version of the Bible being used, unless it was one that made no since. The NKJV is just a awesome Bible..
     
  6. Atonement

    Atonement
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    Bro Tony and Scarlett O..

    Thank you both for supporting Awana, if my daughter will be able to memorize scriptures and quote from the Bible, it's well worth it. Our Church starts up again for the Fall season in two weeks, I'm praying about it and allowing God to guide me as a parent in the way of His Will..
     
  7. DeeJay

    DeeJay
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    My daughter loves AWANA. This will be her second year. She learns alot but in a fun way that makes her want to go. She is looking forward to it alot.
     
  8. Atonement

    Atonement
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    DeeJay,

    Thank you for the words of encouragement. It is so awesome to know how the Holy Spirit can work wonders in these little young souls.
     
  9. Helen

    Helen
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    My children are all grown now, but several of them were in Awana for a number of years. There is positive and negative to be said about it.

    Yes, memorizing Bible is good. The fellowship is wonderful. There is a lot of good about Awana, however I would want to mention why we ended up withdrawing. There were two reasons:

    1. The leaders wanted to know personal details of my children's lives. Nor was it just my children, but all the children in their respective groups. My kids resented this and I didn't blame them.

    2. There is a yearly competition among different Awana groups in the area. The competition is fierce and diligently practiced for. It ends up causing both superior and inferior feelings among the kids, depending on if their teams win or lose. In the effort to have a winning team, the weaker members are not allowed to participate in the competitions. Only the 'top' Awana kids are chosen to compete. This, for us, was entirely against the way our whole family was run. You see, five of my children were adopted special case -- they were not always 'top' in things. And then I had to comfort them as best I could. They tried hard, and were often beaten. One son was brain damaged as his mother had given him drugs after he was born. One daughter has amnionic band syndrome which in her case resulted in missing digits and an entire missing right big toe. That caused a loss of balance a number of times. One son came to us with the whipping marks still across his face and shoulders and was terrified he would let people down.

    We memorized Bible at home. We socialized with Christian friends and went to parks and zoos and had our own parties and games. My goal for my own children and every student I ever taught was to know they were a special 'invention' of God's and every bit as talented in some way, in their own way, as anyone else alive. Awana did not help with that goal for our family.
     
  10. Scarlett O.

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    Helen, I am so sorry that your children had that experience with AWANA. To read it made me angry....very angry. Some people have no business working with children....no matter how good their intentions.

    We have two special needs children in our AWANA program. Our workers seem to go out of their way to make them feel like they are just as important to the entire club as any other kid. One of them can learn the scriptures, just not a quickly as the rest and the other cannot memorize any scriptures. He is profoundly disabled. When it comes his turn to "quote" his scripture verses at the closing ceremony, the leader stands up with him and holds his hand and says a few scriptures that have been read to him over and over and are called "his" verses that he "learned" and he stands there and grins from ear to ear.

    He is 17, but he looks 11. He can talk, but barely. He loves people and loves to sit by the preacher during the music portion of our service.

    In fact, he was baptized not too long ago. During an invitiation, he came forward and struggled to tell the preacher that he wanted to "love Jesus, too".

    Well, how much he really understands, I don't know.....none us of know. But we baptized that little joker anyway!!

    If he does understand, then praise the Lord. If he doesn't understand, then it doesn't matter anyway.

    Well, the preacher baptized him, but blubbered like a baby all the way through it. Everybody cried! And then we clapped!

    Part of this young man's love of coming to church is being treated compassionately and humanely and with great love. I believe AWANA at our church was a part of that.
     
    #10 Scarlett O., Sep 2, 2006
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2006
  11. preachinjesus

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    Awana is a good program. My church during my undergrad years used it and flourished.

    It is volunteer driven so be prepared to make sure you've got plenty of support. With committed parents, it's a great way to motivate kids for Christ. You'll be blessed.
     
  12. Bro Tony

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    I too am saddened to hear of Helen's experience. Let me assure Atonement that the things that caused Helen to remove her children from the program are local issues. Awana does not ask for all the personal information, at least not in my church. And there is no competition between Awana programs in my area. The program itself is sound, that people would misuse it is the way of the religious man.

    Bro Tony
     
  13. SBCPreacher

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    Our children have been involved in AWANA off and on (depending on where we were) for many years. They can still remember the memory verses.

    I highly recommend it. But, it is only as good as the leadership - you need committed, mature Christians to make it work.
     
  14. Jack Matthews

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    We started Awana in our church during the second year of its existence. My son was 6 at the time, and couldn't wait for it each week. We probably should have waited until we had enough adult volunteers, since we did lose a couple of people who got burned out because they were overworked, but in terms of what was accomplished, it turned out well. We now run two separate programs, one on Sunday night and one on Wednesday, with about 20 adults and 60 kids in each.
     
  15. Not_hard_to_find

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    Helen, I can understand a bit about what your children faced. My husband is an adoptee, with whipping marks on his back and legs. Whose adoptive mother told him he was unwanted, and she had only wanted his brother but had to take them both.

    And I regret the competition went that far. A competitive spirit is good sport, as I've experienced in Special Olympics.

    Atonement, I do not know how everyone feels about our AWANA program, but I do know we fill up every Wednesday night, there's lots of activities, lots of participation and the children continue to come and bring their friends.

    I get to be the snack lady and it's such a joy to be of service. My husband came to help me out the first time and he's been there ever since. I would miss the children who decided not to join in, for every one of them provides a blessing to me.

    If you lived close to us, I would hope you'd come visit our IFB, KJV congregation. We'd love to have you!
     
  16. Atonement

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    Thank each of you for your opinions with Awana. Tomorrow at Church I will ask a few question about this and hit on some of the subjects that were brought up here today. God Bless each of you..
     

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