They focus on training the parents to know how to train their children.
For four days in July (July 18-21) from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. fulltime staff members and volunteer youth and family workers from the New York City Church of Christ, the Central Jersey church, the Greater Philadelphia church, and, yes, even from as far away as the Nairobi, Kenya church, gathered in W. Nyack, New York to receive training from John and Karen Louis on Good Enough Parenting. Close to 70 people attended this amazing event.
John and Karen Louis have been married for almost 25 years and have been in the full-time ministry with the International Churches of Christ since 1985. They serve as an evangelist and women’s ministry leader in the church in Singapore. They both hold a Masters in Counseling degree from Monash University of Melbourne, Australia and are members of professional counseling associations in America, Australia, and Singapore.
As founders of Movie TherapyTM in Singapore, John and Karen incorporate the use of multi-media in workshops for ICOC churches as well as for secular organizations and companies in Singapore.
Karen is a certified Solution-Focused Therapist. John is a certified Schema Therapist and member of the International Society for Schema Therapy (ISST), having been trained by Dr. Jeffrey Young, of Columbia University and the founder of Schema Therapy.
Dr. Jeffery Young writes about Good Enough Parenting, “In a world of too much information, Good Enough Parenting uses movies to teach parents how to MEET CORE NEEDS, and, at the same time, how to avoid passing down their own dysfunctional behaviors. Schema Therapy has been successful with adults, but I have always wanted to see someone do something on preventing schemas, or Lifetraps, in children, and here it is!”
Research has shown that when core emotional needs are not met during the formative years of a child, “Lifetraps” (schemas) will develop.
These core emotional needs are four plus one:
Connection & Acceptance
Healthy Autonomy & Performance
And the "plus-one" need of:
Spiritual Values & Community
While no one's parenting can ever be perfect, Good Enough Parenting offers a step-by-step guide on how parents can learn to meet these core emotional needs and provide parenting that is “good-enough” to prevent Lifetraps from developing in their children. Good Enough Parenting was developed by John and Karen Louis and is based on Schema Therapy founded by Dr. Jeffrey Young. In October of 2012 John and Karen’s book on Good Enough Parenting will be available.
The workshop began by introducing the core emotional needs that every individual has in his or her life. Then John and Karen described what happens when those core needs are not met. We develop various coping styles, namely, surrender, avoidance, and counter-attacking or over-compensating. When our core emotional needs are neglected for a prolonged period of time, various schemas or Lifetraps develop in our lives.
The point of Good Enough Parenting is to help parents understand and recognize the core emotional needs of their children. If parents can meet those core emotional needs, then their children will have a better chance of growing up with a healthy emotional makeup.
Parents also need to recognize their own Lifetraps. When those Lifetraps are triggered, how do parents cope? Is it by surrender, avoidance, or counter-attacking? How does the parent keep from drifting into one of these coping styles? John and Karen clearly addressed all of these important issues.
John and Karen are wonderful teachers. They presented the material in a way that everyone could easily understand it. They used movie clips to illustrate the points they were making throughout their presentation. These movie clips were a fantastic way to demonstrate the ideas presented to the students.
John and Karen taught the classes through the lens of an evangelist and a women’s ministry leader who understand what it takes to build dynamic ministries. They taught in a lively, powerful, and inspiring manner. On the one hand, the material was biblically based, and on the other hand, it was steeped in years of psychological research and clinical studies. John and Karen did an amazing job of integrating the spiritual with the psychological.
Also, John and Karen shared what the Singapore church is doing in their Youth and Family ministry to help children become strong disciples. The Singapore church has seen close to 80% of its teens who are kingdom kids become disciples. They have a community approach to helping teens grow spiritually in their church. All the parents are invested in all the children doing well spiritually. John and Karen shared insights about what is happening in the Youth and Family ministry in Singapore that can be applied to all our churches.
The goal is to take what we learned from the Good Enough Parenting Training Program and share it with the parents in our churches. By learning to meet the core emotional needs of our children, we will be better equipped to “train up a child in the way that he or she should go.”
--Steve and Leigh Kinnard