Robert Rayburn states at his Church’s website:
“We do not practice paedocommunion here at Faith Presbyterian. We get as close to it as we can, the rules of our church being what they are, but a profession of faith is still required in the PCA for participation at the Lord’s Table. So, we take professions of faith much sooner than used to be the norm; and, happily, many, many other PCA churches are doing the same. And that is alright. If it takes some years, as it will, to convince the church that the practice of many centuries is in error, so be it. Our little children, having come to the table at five years of age or so, will not remember a time when they did not come, of a Lord’s Day, to eat the bread and drink the wine that Jesus Christ their Savior has provided for them by his body and blood. And in its own mysterious way, that Supper will, by the grace of God and the work of the Holy Spirit, do its work in nourishing their faith in Jesus Christ.”
The irony in all of this is that I serve a “baptist” Church where we would be willing to baptize someone as young as 5. In fact, my daughter was recently baptized at the age of 5. She is a full communicant member of Christ’s Church and entitled to the Supper as a believing member of His Body. While Kira is still my daughter and I have a huge role in nurturing her faith, as do all Covenant parents towards their children, we gather as fellow believers in one household on the Lord’s Day. Yes, there are many household(S) gathered, and yes, God speaks to the Church in respect to our gender and roles, but we receive the Supper as ONE Body. This is why all believers should be served the same portion and in the same manner.
Anyhow, Kira (my daughter) receives the Supper because she herself is a believing Covenant member. She does not receive it because she is born to Covenant parents…she herself is a member who is also accountable to the elders in our Church. I, as her father, am not allowed to use my own discretion from Supper to Supper on whether she is worthy. I can’t unilaterally withhold the elements from her. I would have to bring any concerns I have before the elders. So Kira is still in the jurisdiction of the home, under my care, but she is also individually accountable to the elders as a believing member.
Anyhow, there is some irony in that our kids can potentially be communed as early as the children in Robert Rayburn’s Church. Of greater irony is the fact that children can potentially become baptized communicant members in our “baptist” Church earlier than in most all “Reformed” Churches. It is somewhat comical that I find myself telling paedo-communion folks who visit our Church that there wait in our fellowship would be shorter than in the local “Reformed” churches (go figure), with the exception of one local CREC body. We’re closer to paedo-communion at age 5 than some of the Reformed bodies that are closer to 15 for full communicant status.
I’ll shelf this entry under the category, “The Mysterious World of American Evangelicalism”. I think it fits there