Friday, June 25, 2010

What is Your Seating Personality Type?

Welcome Company Girls, and guests. Would you like some coffee, lemonade, along with some fresh fruit. One of my favorite parts of summer is the available fresh fruit.

So, before I explain the title of this posting, I have a confession. I have not been following along with the Small Things. And, now that summer has officially arrived, and the kids are out of school, I fear not much cleaning, nor organizing, is happening around here. And, I am at peace with that (a big step for a Type A personality to accept.)

At the end of this summer, all three children will be in school, full time, and my first few acts as an empty nester, per se, will be to clean out closets and deep clean the house. Oh, and painting. Otherwise known as stalling the job hunt.

Now, to my question. If you are part of a church, does your church have adult Sunday school classes? And if they do, and if you are a part of a Sunday school class, how does your class sit, in a circle or in rows?

Crazy questions, I know.

While sitting in a building committee meeting at our church (we are needing to renovate an old building which is now used for adult SS classes and an after-school child care program) it was noted that most of our SS classes sit in circles, lending to a more discussion type class, and therefore the classrooms needed to be larger in size to accommodate a circle of chairs. Except for, maybe, one class, where most participants are retired pastors, they sit in rows. We seem to be the church where retired seminarians come to worship, at least enough of them and their spouses to create their own SS class.

We are Mennonite, so I wondered if sitting in a circle was more of a Mennonite "thing." My only reference is my parent's SS class which sits in rows, and they are Church of God, General Conference.

Then again, it may be a generational thing.

Another observation was made, that mainly Mennonite churches are the only churches allocating space for adult Sunday school classes. Many other churches are moving towards a small group model for adults, and holding children's Sunday school during church.

Crazy questions, but the whole discussion got me thinking about other denominations. Maybe, it is a blogger thing, every little comment makes the gears churn, thinking of how to make this into a post. Kind of like taking pictures. When you blog you suddenly take pictures of EVERYTHING!

Thanks for stopping for Company Girl Coffee. For more Company Girl chatter head over to Rachel Anne's at Home Sanctuary.


Lea said...

Well, Erin, I do not think it is a Memmonite "thing" at all. I'm Baptist and in our class we sit in a circle for the very reason you stated, more discussion and just seems closer. Not all of our classes are that way, it's about half and half throughout the church. And, I do think that many churches are going to small groups, but ours has not made it there yet. Enjoyed your entry, always fun to get different opinions and ideas from fellow bloggers. Blessings to you!

Diane said...

Wow - from one type A to another, congrats on being able to "let go" for the summer, that's quite an accomplishment.

We rent space at a high school for church (non-denominational, but with Ev. Free Church roots), and rent additional rooms for both kids' Sunday School and adults. The room layout isn't our call, so we have classroom type seating. You're right that circles promote more sharing.

One More Equals Four said...

We do have Adult S.S. in our church but I teach children so I am not sure how they sit. I'm sure there is a little of both. I love having S.S. because the children can then join us for family worship...but I guess that is old fashioned because you are right about many going to the family group format!

Have a great weekend!

Cathy said...

Grew up Southern Baptist...I think we did mostly circle sitting. There were rows occasionally. We are now in a bible church. The ladies class sits in rows because that is what the space allows. The men are in a circle (in the kitchen Ha) and the other adult class is in the sanctuary so they are in rows. The children's classes are a mixture I think of circle and row. I think it's a combo of space available and individual preference. That is an interesting question! I'll be back to read more of the results.
Have a great weekend!

secondofwett said...

In our church our s.s. program is during church so there isn't any adult class. I think when the groups meet for small group bible study that they mostly sit in circles...even in childrens s.s. we found that it worked better in circles for kids to not pester each other as much!

Audrey said...

I'm the sit-on-a-couch-or-worn-armchair-or-on-the-floor-in-somebody's-living-room seating type. :) Right now we attend a Bible Church, which is actually a conglomeration of people from many denominational backgrounds, but I miss the home-church setting and hope to experience it once again. The close communion and open accountibility are so sweet and amazing. I wish there weren't such things as "denominations"!