James and I, along with 14 other parents, have just reached the end of The Parenting Children Course. It has been a brilliant course giving us all invaluable wisdom and guidance as we juggle the demands of being parents.
The Parenting Children Course has been put together by Nicky & Sila Lee, (Nicky is a vicar at Holy Trinity Brompton, London) and the course is now run across churches all over the world.
Our evenings began with sitting down all together to a delicious meal at a beautifully laid table. This was always such a welcome treat for everyone and so hugely appreciated. Judith Mezger coordinated the food rota, and we want to say a huge thank you to her and everyone who volunteered their evenings to serve us.
After our supper, we sat down to watch Nicky & Sila’s teaching on DVD. There were two slots during this time for discussion in small groups. These discussion times were highly valued by all. It was so encouraging to hear from other parents facing the same battles and triumphs; to share ideas and learn from each others’ experiences; and also to build friendships which I’m sure will continue to grow over the coming years.
Some of the topics covered included ‘building a strong family’, ‘meeting our children’s needs’, ‘setting boundaries’, ‘teaching healthy relationships’ and ‘our long term aim’. All sorts of new ideas are already being put into practice by the parents who came – from instigating a weekly ‘family fun night’; to prioritizing regular 1-1 time with each of our children; tuning into our children’s ‘love languages’; and getting the right balance between warmth and firmness when setting boundaries.
We are hugely grateful for the chance to have done this course, and if it’s run again in the near future, we highly recommend it.
Thank you so much to Julia and James Wright for running this course for parents in Itchen Valley. Thank you also to Jude Mezger who organised all the catering and to Gilly Greenwood, Amanda Seymour, Jill Croft, Elaine and Henry Labram, Charlotte Appleby, Gerry Stacey and Helen Wayne who kindly cooked suppers, served and washed up for the guests every evening. Thanks also to Beccy Clark who did so much to organise the event and set up and pull down the screen projection and sound equipment – and probably didn’t expect to be a roadie when she took on the job of Parish Administrator. Thank you also to Vernon and Arminel for getting the church layout right for the evenings. Everyone made a huge contribution and the families represented in the evenings will have benefitted massively by the ideas shared.
Revd. Alex Pease