Now in its seventh year, the Gather ’Round curriculum for children and youth jointly published by Brethren Press and MennoMedia continues to attract attention from a variety of Christians beyond Brethren and Mennonites. The Cumberland Presbyterian Church has just signed on as an endorsing partner, and Gather ’Round recently received a strong endorsement from popular Christian author Brian McLaren.
“Many of us have lamented the fact that some of the flashiest and most widely-marketed curricula teach children about God, the Bible, and the Christian life in ways that students will need to unlearn when they reach adolescence and adulthood,” McLaren said. “We’ve hoped and prayed for curricula that would lay a foundation in childhood that will still serve as students come of age. I’m grateful that Gather ‘Round is a creative leader in this needed approach. I’m so glad to have finally discovered them.”
Gather ’Round is a joint project of the Church of the Brethren, Mennonite Church USA, and Mennonite Church Canada.
Three other denominations continue as cooperating partners: the United Church of Christ (UCC), the Mennonite Brethren, and the Moravian Church. They order prepublication quantities of the materials and sell directly to their congregations.
In addition, the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), United Church of Canada, and the Cumberland Presbyterian Church are endorsing partners, promoting the curriculum in exchange for a small percentage of sales made to their congregations.
Over the years, as word of the curriculum has spread, a number of congregations from other Christian traditions have begun ordering Gather ’Round for their Sunday school classes, including Methodist, Episcopal, Baptist, Presbyterian, Friends (Quakers), Lutheran, Brethren in Christ, and Evangelical Covenant churches.