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92 of 93 found the following review helpful:
INTEGRATE CATECHISM WITH FAMILY DEVOTIONSDec 18, 2000
By Larry Wilson
I wish this book had been available 25 years ago! It is subtitled "Family Devotions Based on the Shorter Catechism" and that's exactly what it is-brief devotions for parents to use in family worship. Starr Meade teaches Bible and Latin at Redeemer Christian School in Mesa, Arizona, and is experienced in directing children's ministries. That background contributes to an excellent, very helpful volume. Meade tackles one Catechism question per week. But this is not first and foremost a study guide on the Westminster Shorter Catechism. It is first and foremost Bible devotions based on the Catechism. Training Hearts, Teaching Minds provides brief readings that direct parents to related Scriptures and suggest questions to ask children so they may consider what God's Word says about that Catechism theme. At the same time, the Scripture readings are guided by the Catechism so that readers can learn the full-orbed Biblical system of faith and practice. The strength of this book is that it helpfully blends catechism learning with Scripture reading. For six days, Monday through Saturday, these devotionals reflect on different facets of the Catechism question of the week. This provides a practical solution for parents who want to catechize their children but don't know how to start. By using this book, you can work as a family on memorizing one question a week. You can review the questions on the Lord's Day. If you and your children memorize one question a week, you will have memorized the whole Catechism in approximately two years. That sounds doable, doesn't it? Fathers can integrate these readings into daily family worship. If you don't know how to have family worship, this book can help you start: (1) use the Scripture and catechism meditation; (2) sing praises; and (3) pray. Training Hearts, Teaching Minds is written on a level that elementary school children can follow. But it is easy to adapt the readings for an older age group. Although the book is designed for family worship, it is easy to conceive of other uses. An individual-even an adult-might use these meditations in his or her secret worship. A Christian school teacher might use the readings for class devotions. I highly recommend Training Hearts, Teaching Minds as-in the words of David Wells-"a superb, imaginative example of how to teach historic Christian faith to our children."
65 of 65 found the following review helpful:
Help for a grieving childOct 27, 2003
In June of this year, My brother was in a house fire. My wife and I cared for his 7-year-old daughter while he recovered in ICU. We decided to use this book to give our niece some foundational training in the Christian faith. After 13 weeks fighting for his life my brother died. Immediately after the funeral, we skipped to Question 37, "What benefit do believers recieve at their deaths?". Once our niece moved away her school guidance counseler asked her, "How are you dealing with the death of your father?". Her immediate response was, "Question 37." She proceeded to assure her that question wasn't the only question she knew. She is now teaching the questions she knows to her teachers!
This has really shown me the benefit of teaching the catechism. Teaching it prepares our young ones to make sense of this world. I highly recommend this book.
35 of 36 found the following review helpful:
EXCELLENT BOOK FOR 'DINNERTIME' DEVOTIONSJan 29, 2001
By A. Dinardo
"Those of us who care about passing on the baton of historic Christian truth must awaken to the importance of faithfully imparting its doctrines to our children... Children need a grid through which to sift all that they see and hear. We must provide this for our children while they are still young. Doctrine cannot wait until children are teens, because adolescents are making major life decisions. The theological framework on which to base those decisions, the biblical worldview, must already be in place."
So writes Starr Meade in his book Training Hearts Teaching Minds: Family Devotions Based on the Shorter Catechism, a book that provides short devotions on the questions and answers contained in the Shorter Catechism. There are six devotions (Monday thru Saturday) along with highlighted scripture references for each of the 107 catechism questions and answers (642 devotions in all), making the book an excellent resource for `dinnertime' devotions with your children.
102 of 120 found the following review helpful:
DenominationalJan 20, 2007
By J. Gilbertson
Just a note to say that this book is a Presbyterian catechism, not a Baptist one. The main difference I see is that of baptism and the Lord's supper being "effective for salvation." That, and it teaches that infants should be baptized. I don't want to start a discussion of the merits of one view over another. I just wanted to point out the differences to those who may be considering buying the book. I wish I would have known this before I bought the book.
I am considering purchasing:
20 of 21 found the following review helpful:
A Helpful Aid in Christian NurtureAug 29, 2002
By W. Larson
One of the shortcommings of the Westminster Shorter Catechism is that when compared with the Heidleberg Catechism and Luther's Shorter Catechism one can feel as thought they have just exchanged the warmth and vibrancy of the Christian faith for a list of words and their definitions. This has often made the catechism difficult to use in the context of discipling young children.
With this book, we should all be extremely grateful to Starr Meade for this very helpful devotional. The author covers each question from the Westminster Shorter Catechism over six lessons. This enables families to take an entire week to reflect and think about how each question is drawn for the Scriptures and how they might apply to our lives and Christians.
As a pastor, I am always looking for material that can encourage families in their devotions. This is a welcome volume. My only quibbles are that each lesson is very short and I would like to have see more Scripture used for each study. But these last comments shouldn't dissuade anyone from buying this book.
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