The term, 'Sunday school' is used to refer to the system wherein religious education is rendered on Sundays by various religious congregations. Robert Raikes, an English philanthropist, felt the need to design a system, which could prevent the children in the slums from treading on the wrong paths in life. He is considered as one of the pioneers in the development of Sunday schools. By 1831, Sunday schools had become quite popular across Great Britain. Today, different forms of Sunday schools prevail in the Christian society.
Purpose of Sunday Schools
Most Sunday schools aim at providing the common masses with an opportunity to study the Bible. The Sunday school education often includes a comprehensive study of the Bible. It intends to imbibe in the minds of the people, the principles and philosophies stated in the Bible. One of the primary purposes of the Sunday school is to teach the Bible to the students. The Sunday school teaching aims at instilling in the minds of the students, faith in God and teaching them the principles, which Christ adhered to.
The education imparted in Sunday schools is generally intended to promote Christian fellowship. One of the primary goals of a Sunday school is to evangelize the common people, thereby promoting the spread of Christianity. It aims at bringing people from different strata of society together. It aims at uniting the people under one common umbrella called Christianity. The preachings of Jesus Christ are shared with the common masses and they are encouraged to adhere to His principles.
Sunday school is meant to teach the common people, the principles of social service. Sunday schools are about teaching the people to be concerned towards society and work for its betterment. It is about encouraging the people to be positive in life and imbibe optimism in those around them. It is about instilling in the young minds, love and care towards others in society. The Sunday school education aims at bringing about the spread of justice and equality in society. It aims at developing a society that believes in living with peace and harmony.
Sunday schools aim at helping people from all age groups to adopt the principles of God. Sunday school education intends to teach people the ways to adhere to ideals in life. At times, this involves the learning of scriptures from the Bible. Learning what the Bible has to say helps the people communicate with God. Enabling the communication of a common man with God is an important goal of Sunday schools. They aim at bringing about a spiritual growth of their students.
The purpose of Sunday schools is indeed noble. One must not ignore the fact that Sunday schools give the society an opportunity to be a part of the mission of Christianity to establish equality, peace and harmony in society. They aim at the creation of a society that is based on the principles of Christ. They serve as excellent platforms to go closer to God.