Okay... here's a question for all of you Christian mamas. This past weekend we were in Virginia. We stayed with my mother in law who is a born again Christian. I am also a Christian and have always gone to an Assemblies of God Church which is also the denomination that dh's mom goes to. Anyway, we were going to join her at church on Sunday and she brought us this two page discipline guideline that their church follows as far as sunday school goes. What I probably would have tried to do before thinking about it was taken Tabby (my almost 9 month old who is about 90% breastfed- 10% baby foods - she has just started being interested in other foods) into the service and left Sky (my 2 1/2 year old) in sunday school with other kiddos unless she wanted to come with us (I never leave her so I wasn't sure if she'd be okay without us but I figured they could come and get us if they needed to). Anyway, after reading what she brought home I decided I did not want to go AT ALL. First of all, NO children (babies, etc) were allowed in the service. I disagree with that because I feel that babies, children, all make up a church community and add to it- whether it be their cooing, crying, whatever- it's part of life. Parents can usually leave the services I've been to and do if their babes cry and in the churches I've been to- there is the service on a loudspeaker throughout the church. Anyway, the second thing that got me to thinking about all this is that their discipline policy for children in sunday school had to do with a "rod of correction". This I believe they just meant spanking. But, me being a mama who believes in gentle discipline- I couldn't imagine my dd even seeing another child being hit. It went on to say that the parents must agree to this. And that if the offense was against another child the offending child must be "broken" in front of other children (a public offense). It went into detail and quoted many bible references regarding spanking. I know the "spare the rod spoil the child" but there were others. My dd is sleeping on my lap or I could pull the paper out. Anyway, I obviously couldn't fathom leaving my child in such an environment. I didn't want her to see someone be hit much less be in a place where a stranger would be allowed to hit her. That thought just about brings tears to my eyes. But this whole thing did bring about a question to me. Are there any bible references that teach gentle discipline? Or am I as a Christian going against Christian and biblical belief in NOT hitting/spanking/breaking my daughters? I really want your honest opinions on both sides of the coin. I don't think that I could ever hit my child but I would like to know if I am "biblically speaking" doing the "wrong" thing. Please let me know what faith you are when you answer as well. Just curious as to everyone's different insights and where they come from. Oh, and I called my church to find out their policy on spanking in the Sunday school here when we got back into town because we are talking about going this Sunday. Dh ended up going alone this past Sunday in Virginia with his family and I stayed home with the girls. He has newly been interested in the church and finding God and I am thrilled and am happy to be going to church again - I haven't been to church in a while - probably a year... Anyway... my church here of the same denomination has a policy of Never hitting a child and lets discipline issues like spanking to be up to the parent. They were surprised when I told them about the other church in Virginia although the one lady did say that she heard of that type of policy in a school setting not just a sunday school but a day to day school. Anyway... opinions anyone?! Thanks!