Teaching the Infant Class in Sunday School

Those who have had the privilege of teaching the youngest children in a Christian Science Sunday School often feel that they have had a most inspiring experience, one from which they have themselves learned a great deal. There seems, however, to be some unwillingness to accept this privilege on the part of many church members who would perhaps welcome the opportunity of teaching the older children.

What is it that would rob one of such a valuable experience, and at the same time deprive the little ones of the rightful guidance one might give them? Is it the belief that there seems to be a mental gulf between the little pupils and the teacher: on one side the educated belief in material law, and consequent loss of ingenuousness; on the other side a belief of undeveloped intelligence? If one accepts the belief of more than one Mind, he may believe that he has to instill spiritual truths into small human beings of very limited intelligence, and possessed of a wealth of disconcerting habits.

In the Glossary in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 582) Mrs. Eddy defines "children" as "the spiritual thoughts and representatives of Life, Truth, and Love;" and then she gives the material meaning, in part, as "sensual and mortal beliefs; counterfeits of creation, whose better originals are God's thoughts, not in embryo, but in maturity." If the teacher refuses to accept as real the "counterfeits of creation," and realizes that his work is to recognize "God's thoughts, not in embryo, but in maturity," he finds that each child brings helpful ideas to the class. The smallest children in the Sunday school, through their pure, uncontaminated thought, often readily grasp the simple truths which their elders do not so quickly understand. If one asks these little ones a question, humbly seeking to learn with them, one will usually be rewarded with an answer as satisfying as it is straightforward.

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The Sunbeam Remains a Sunbeam
March 19, 1938

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