I noticed on Tim Challies' blog that Hamilton had recently posted a Q&A on Family Integrated Churches, and I found this discussion helpful. Hamilton describes Family Integrated Churches as a spectrum of congregations; from some that focus on "discipling dads to disciple families" and keeping families united in Sunday School and worship, to those that are "intentional about encouraging fathers to lead their families in family worship and disciple their children" and intentionally embrace biblical gender roles. He describes this spectrum a different way in another question:
Whereas a strictly “Family Integrated Church” might be inclined to view the family as God’s program for evangelism, discipleship, and world missions, we at Redeemer believe that the church is God’s program for evangelism, discipleship, and world missions.
I think this is a particularly helpful discussion because it emphasizes the biblical responsibilities parents, and especially fathers, should have in the discipleship of children. Hamilton argues that his church views Sunday School and other educational activities for children as supplemental. Our churches should be dedicated to helping parents disciple children. Here's Hamilton's take on the goal of youth ministry:
I know that when I was in youth ministry it never occurred to me, nor did anyone from whom I was learning “youth ministry” ever suggest to me, that our job was actually to help the parents disciple their own kids. These things are often overlooked by both parents and kids, and some youth ministries get so caught up in building skate parks, having cool lighting and great music, and going on big trips to fun places that “discipleship” gets overlooked, too.
So, what do you think? How should our churches embrace an emphasis on helping parents disciple children?