As you may remember, the late Fred Rogers of the Mister Rogers TV show fame was a Presbyterian clergyman, and his show sometimes was thought of as a secular ministry carrying eternal values for children.
In some ways, that's what Laura Wellington has tried to create with her animated show "The Wumblers."
As she explains on the Web site in a welcome to parents, "Spiritually and globally conscious, The Wumblers devotes each and every episode to making the world a better place for ALL."
As a grandfather of six (the oldest of whom is six), I'm always on the lookout for wholesome books and other learning tools for little kids. I wasn't aware of The Wumblers until recently, though I now see that the weekly TV version of it is on the TBN channel on the Time Warner cable system to which I subscribe, though the timing isn't especially good -- 7:30 on Saturday mornings.
But maybe that's a perfect time for your kids or grandkids.
The Wumblers are make-believe characters who are designed to teach helpful lessons and values to kids. As the site says, "The particular timeliness and necessity for responsible adults to teach their children values that ensure a more peaceful and promising future for everyone is, unfortunately, obvious. The Wumblers helps to promote these values in an engaging and entertaining manner through a combination of brilliant storylines, original characters, and lighthearted play."
So have a look around the Wumblers' site and check out the TV show if you have a chance to see if you find it reinforces things you want young people to learn. And see if the fantasy aspects (kids born from watermelons, food falling from the sky) are helpful or distracting.
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THIS PASTOR IS NOT DONE YET
When I wrote recently about the impending death of -- and new book by -- the Rev. Forrest Church, I did not expect that he would return to his pulpit in New York and preach again. But, as this New York Times report recounts, that's exactly what happened this past Sunday. Go, Forrest.
To read my latest Kansas City Star work, click here.
Today's religious holidays: Rosh Hashanah (Judaism); Navaratri (Hinduism)