Sunday school


Sunday school

"Sunday school" is the generic name for many different types of religious education pursued on Sundays by various denominations.

It had its origins when Hannah Ball, a native of High Wycombe in Buckinghamshire, England, founded a school within the town in 1769. [cite web | url = http://www.gracemagazine.org.uk/articles/historical/raikes.htm | title = Robert Raikes and the Sunday School Movement | accessdate = 2007-10-26] However the founding of Sunday schools is more commonly associated with the work of Robert Raikes, editor of the "Gloucester Journal", who saw the need to prevent children in the slums descending into crime. The first Sunday school in London opened at Surrey Chapel under Rowland Hill. By 1831, Sunday schools in Great Britain were attended weekly by 1,250,000 children, approximately 25 percent of the population. Their work in the industrial cities was increasingly supplemented by ragged schools (charitable provision for the industrial poor), and eventually by publicly funded education under the late nineteenth century school boards. Sunday schools continued alongside such increasing educational provision, and new forms also developed such as the Socialist Sunday Schools movement which began in the United Kingdom in the late 19th century.

Some Roman Catholic churches operate Sunday schools, though Catholics commonly refer to Sunday school as "Catechism class". Sunday schools, contrary to the name, are virtually never recognized educational institutions; rather than offering formal grades or transcripts, Sunday schools simply attempt to offer meaningful instruction concerning Christian doctrine and keep little or no record of performance for any given week. Attendance is often tracked as a means of encouraging children to appear regularly, and awards are frequently given for reaching attendance milestones.

Sunday school often takes the form of a one hour or longer Bible study which can occur before, during, or after a church service. While many Sunday schools are focused on providing instruction for children (especially those occurring during service times), adult Sunday school classes are also popular and widespread (see RCIA.) In some traditions, Sunday school is too strongly associated with children and alternate terms such as "Adult Electives" are used instead of "Adult Sunday school". Some churches only run Sunday school for children concurrently with the adult worship service. In this case there is typically no adult Sunday school.

Sunday school teachers are usually lay people who are selected for their job by a church board or committee, normally because of their advanced experience with the Bible—few teachers receive any formal training in education, though many Sunday school teachers have a background in education as a result of their occupations. Some churches, however, do make Sunday school teachers and catechists attend several courses on religion to ensure that they have a mature enough understanding of the faith to educate others. Some Baptist Churches (particularly Southern Baptist Churches) do allow volunteers to teach even without formal educational backgrounds. A profession of faith and a desire to teach is all that is required in such a case.

It is also not uncommon for Roman Catholic priests or Protestant pastors (church ministers) to teach such classes themselves.

Hebrew schools also usually operate on Sundays.

Also, in America, some Islamic education is taught on either Saturday or Sunday.

unday school today

Today many different expressions of Sunday schools exist. They range from traditional methods of teaching, using small groups, Bible-based teaching, familiar songs etc. to the more contemporary. Sunday school is often part of a larger Christian Formation program in many churches.

In 1986 a new kind of Sunday school started out of a ministry of Bill Wilson in the inner city of Brooklyn, New York, called Sidewalk Sunday School. With little delivery trucks that can be converted to stages, project areas and parks are being served Sunday school programs.

Metro Ministries is now in many major cities in the U.S. and has branches in eight other countries.

Notable Sunday school teachers

*Jimmy Carter, 39th President of the United States and Nobel Prize
*Truett Cathy, Founder of Chick-fil-A, has taught Sunday school for over 44 years.
*Stephen Colbert, American comedian and host of the Colbert Report
*Alexander Fletcher (Rev.), 'The Children's Friend', nineteenth century pioneer of attracting large audiences of children
*Margaret Hamilton, American Film Actress ("The Wicked Witch of the West")
*Johnny Isakson, U.S. Senator of Georgia
*John Marshall Harlan, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States 18771911
*Lewis Miller, Inventor, Businessman, and founder of the Chautauqua Institution
*Dwight L. Moody, American evangelist and publisher
*Robert Raikes, English philanthropist and founder of the Sunday School Movement
*Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States
*Charles M. Schulz, US cartoonist
*Jeff Sessions, U.S. Senator of Alabama
*Dick Van Dyke, American Television and Film Actor
*Bill Wilson, Senior Pastor and founder of the largest Sunday school in America (20,000 children each week)

ee also

*Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (a form of Catholic religious education)
*Religious ministry (Christian)
*Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults
*Socialist Sunday Schools
*Sunday School (LDS Church) : an auxiliary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
*Vacation Bible School
*Youth Ministry
*Hebrew school (also called "Sunday school" by Reform Judaism).

References

External links

* [http://www.gracemagazine.org.uk/articles/historical/raikes.htm Robert Raikes and the Sunday School Movement]


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Sunday school — School School, n. [OE. scole, AS. sc?lu, L. schola, Gr. ? leisure, that in which leisure is employed, disputation, lecture, a school, probably from the same root as ?, the original sense being perhaps, a stopping, a resting. See {Scheme}.] 1. A… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sunday school — Sunday schools N VAR Sunday school is a class organized by a church that some children go to on Sundays in order to learn about Christianity. I went to the young people s service in the morning and to Sunday school in the afternoon. ...a Sunday… …   English dictionary

  • Sunday school — Sunday Sun day, a. Belonging to the Christian Sabbath. [1913 Webster] {Sunday letter}. See {Dominical letter}, under {Dominical}. {Sunday school}. See under {School}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sunday school — n. 1. a school, usually affiliated with some church or synagogue, giving religious instruction on Sunday 2. the teachers and pupils of such a school …   English World dictionary

  • Sunday school — n [U and C] a place where children are taught about Christianity on Sundays …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Sunday school — Sunday ,school noun count or uncount religious classes for children that are given in a church on Sundays …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Sunday school — ► NOUN ▪ a class held on Sundays to teach children about Christianity …   English terms dictionary

  • Sunday school — 1. a school, now usually in connection with a church, for religious instruction on Sunday. 2. the members of such a school. Also called Sabbath school. [1775 85] * * * also called  church school , or  Christian education        school for… …   Universalium

  • Sunday school — noun school meeting on Sundays for religious instruction (Freq. 1) • Syn: ↑Sabbath school • Hypernyms: ↑school * * * noun [count, noncount] : a school especially for children that is held on Sunday for religious education * * * ˈSunday school… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sunday school — UK / US noun [countable/uncountable] Word forms Sunday school : singular Sunday school plural Sunday schools religious lessons for children that are given in a church on Sundays …   English dictionary


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