Puppet Ministry

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Puppet Ministry

The Panda
Peeps, here is a question that I want to ask and hopefully we can get some clarification.
I am about to start a puppet ministry in Sands, yet I am hearing negative feedback from certain
individuals in the church, that it is wrong, or it is considered to be sexual in nature and should not
be done....whilst many others from church and around the world fully support this type of ministry.
Is there any Biblical foundation to the negative comments, if there is a valid reason that we do not
do these type of ministries, then i would like to know so i can re-evaluate.  So far I have not seen
any Bible texts and obviously many SDA churches around the world do this to reach the community as a whole so I would like to know the biblical reasoning......anyone ?
The Panda
I told my wife that a husband is like a fine wine; he gets better with age. The next day, she locked me in the cellar.
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
I found this site talking about the issues surrounding puppets and our church, its worth a read and then we can discuss further

http://www.childmin.com/printable.php?lang=eng&index=40

Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The Panda
Though EG White may have had comments about sensual theatrics, she does not condemn the use of VISUAL AIDS which were and are puppets.   We can use a glass for water or for whisky.  It all depends on how the puppet ministry is used to win people to a closer walk with God.  People today are NOT going to accept religion forced down their throats, i am talking about the cold person on the street, crusades do NOT work, we have to work from friendship, mingling, being the SALT of the earth of the community.  Churches may work for people who have already given their lives to Jesus or who already on that path, but if we as a church want to show Jesus, our lives and our community services ministry has more of an impact than any other department in the church
The Panda
I told my wife that a husband is like a fine wine; he gets better with age. The next day, she locked me in the cellar.
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
hmmm, Panda, you're sounding more and more like the people you've been dead against all these years he he he.
On a serious note though, some of the difficulties we as a church go through is how to be relevant to our young people. Maybe traditionally, some of our more mature members would look at this method (puppetry) and say no way, that's too worldly, but how do we make church "attractive"? is the reason why we do something more important than the method? especially when the method is non-traditional?

I suppose it depends on which side of the fence your sitting as to how comfortable you are with non-traditional methods, as the saying goes WWJD?  (What Would Jesus Do?)
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
This post was updated on .
*This message was posted by "The King"*

Ellen white says we should be creative in our methods, but still preach a pure gospel, puppets shouldn't be used for entertainment in our churches on a sabbath morning, but for a witnesssing tool in the community, that's just a general rule there are exceptions to that as with Geoff from Newbold demonstrating what can be achieved if we put the time, commitment and energy into this method. We shouldn't become superficial, most of the people I know who active with puppets and have made a success of it, do it in the communtiy.
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The King
I discussed yesterday in the sabbath school about this issue and negative comments the panda had received, no one objected there seems to be positive comments made by a few people, so go ahead
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
As an addition to this question, is there a limit to the level of creativity the church should adopt?
As an example, we're comfortable with skits and mimes, we sometimes go as far as poems/rapping but what about the other arts, things like encouraging painting, sculpting, music and light compositions etc. etc. Should we encourage our youth to be totally creative in their acts of worship or limit them to the well used half dozen or so methods?
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
OK no response so lets widen the question, how creative can we be when sharing the gospel? should it include secular music? sport? social interaction (i.e. theater etc.)? or should we stick to the normal church/tent/crusade type creativity?
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The King
I think as long as it is not antagonistic to christianity, for example some music may not be appropriate for worship I wont give specifics the moment I do that someone will argue in favour, as long as the community of believers can agree certain standards ie church manual then we can go forward in faith, not everyone will agree with the manual, but its as good a place to start as any.
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
OK. so let me ask a specific question then, assuming Christians don't have any issues regarding art, is christian art workshops (i.e. painting/drawing)an acceptable past time for church or should that be left to during the week activities?
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The King
we will as younger generation push the bounderaries further than our parents, and the next generation will probalby have no problem with certain activities on sabbeth, as long as it is done decently and in order. the children already do a lot in sabbath school that is more creative, than we would normally associate with sabbath acitivites. children have no hang ups or preconceived ideas, only what there parents pass on to them. on the other hand we should not do our own thing or own pleasure on sabbath, yet at the same time we can do things that make the sabbath a delight. ist finding that balance that is why we live in a community, we should avoid offending people, yet we should step out in faith and move people out of there comfort zones. i'm avoiding being specific!
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
well said!!
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The King
we have nothing to fear except we forget the way the Lord has lead us in our past history.
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Re: Puppet Ministry

calderman

As you probably can imagine, there is much opposition to it, because it brings
in a very secular element.  We should not have to adopt the ways of the world to
get children's attention.  However, many think it is fine, because children as a
whole watch so much worse on their home T.V.'s and this really grabs the
attention of little ones, and many older ones too.     I find Phil. 4:8 is a
great standard to judge things with.

Novels and Theatrical performances are condemned, thus I have serious questions
on this as well.
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The King
the organ came from the theatre, and your right there was much opposition to it in the beginning, but as they became more popular and economical, they were accepted to the point that we think it strange if the church doesn't have an organ. how do we decide what in the long term will be good for the church, there was oppostion to the tv, but now we have the hope channel world wide, could it be that somethings of the world are neutral, it is how we use them to give glory to God! 1 cor. 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
Calderman makes an interesting point and I think its worthwhile developing his point further. Should we as Christians reject all things secular? We are told after all that we are not (should not be) of this world. Can you elaborate further.

To follow up on The King's comment, isn't neutrality subjective? take for example the steel pan from the Caribbean, for someone outside looking on, they may see the steel pan as a neutral instrument, could be used for good or bad but inherently neutral. But then you might have someone who used to be part of the carnival scene but then became a christian and decided that the steel pan was part of his past and rejects all connotation to it, classifying it as bad (secular!) and advising everyone to keep it out of church.

Now if there's an element of subjectivity in it then what's right for one person may be wrong for another then how do you maintain church culture/discipline/standard?

I think depending on one's perspective determines how they look at things neutral or otherwise.
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
In reply to this post by calderman
Your last sentence mentions novels and theatrical performances as being condemned, where do you find this? can you detail further?
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The King
although ellen white counseled against frequenting the theatre in her day, she also used it herself. For several days we laboured earnestly for the Auckland church. Evening meetings were held as often as the brethren could attend, and each Sabbath and Sunday was fully occupied. Twice I spoke in the theatre to attentive audiences. Elder Starr laboured untiringly for the church. Several of the evening meetings were called early in the evening, and I would speak for half an hour, and then Elder Starr would follow with a discourse, or Bible lesson. In all, I spoke eight times in Auckland.  {BEcho, May 15, 1893 par. 2}  

she did mention novels and theatre together. In Christian homes a bulwark should be built against temptation. Satan is using every means to make crime and degrading vice popular. We cannot walk the streets of our cities without encountering flaring notices of crime presented in some novel, or to be acted at some theatre. The mind is educated to familiarity with sin. The course pursued by the base and vile is kept before the people in the periodicals of the day, and everything that can arouse passion is brought before them in exciting stories.  {BEcho, October 15, 1894 par. 4}  

We should take into consideration time and place and circumstances in her writings.
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Re: Puppet Ministry

Noey
So her writings indicate that she used the building but not for theatrical performances, so the question still comes down to whether performance is the problem rather than the building. Going to the theater does not necessarily mean going to the building but going to see what is happening there???

I personally think that the principle is be careful what we take into our minds as it's there where the biggest impression takes place. In her day, reading novels and periodicals and going to the theater  were the danger, is it the same today? I think not; today, tv, internet, in fact all media, causes the bigger problem, however, does banning/avoiding all media solve the problem?  burying our heads in the sand does not make the problem go away and to push this idea on its own causes us to totally disconnect with the very same people we are trying to witness to

That is why I think our church has embraced a lot of this media and use it for good. Off course I'm open  to a different understanding of our pioneers thinking and to see if we should adopt an all or nothing methodology based on the testimonies but please provide info and thoughts on it.
Noey
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Re: Puppet Ministry

The King
can I recommend the book, myths in adventism by George R Knight, he balances out the seemingly negative statements, with Ellen Whites practice, and statements in the review encouraging us to read some religious fiction. such as paradise lost and pilgrims progress, which opens the door to such good works as the chronicles of Narnia and lord of the rings, today, we shouldn't take what she says about novels to an extreme, also I believe the practise of nativity and passion plays, to be acceptable within the christian community, there are good and bad plays, today we might go to see Joseph and his technicoloured dreamcoat, I have seen it twice and boths times I have gone with non sda's who are open to this kind of religious experience. surely this is a good thing, to expose secular people to a great bible story.
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