At baptism, we pray that the newly baptized will be given, “an inquiring and discerning heart, the courage to will and to persevere, a spirit to know and to love you, and the gift of joy and wonder in all your works.” (BCP, 308) This describes well what we hope to impart to our children. Through worship, teaching and fellowship, we hope they will be nurtured in the faith and rooted in the love and care of our community.
Godly Play (pre-K through 2nd grade) is a Montessori-based program that introduces children to Christian Scripture and worship through storytelling and liturgical play.
Growing in Christ (3rd-5th grade) offers a series of lessons designed to help children learn and actively participate in Christian worship. On a three-year rotation of “Service to Others,” this year our 3rd-5th graders will focus on serving parishioners in our St. Matthew’s community.
Faith Formation for the St. Matthew’s Family continues this year with monthly intergenerational programming at 9:15 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall. We offer Eucharist as well as musical accompaniment. We invite all members of our parish family – not only those with young children – to join us for worship. On these Sundays, classes are combined (Godly Play, Growing in Christ, Youth, and The Sunday Forum).
Children’s Chapel – With the goal of making worship more meaningful for both children and parents alike, this fall, we are offering Children’s Chapel during the 10:30 a.m. service at St. Matthew’s! Children in grades K-5 are invited to leave with our Children’s Chapel leader after the Opening Collect, and return to sit with their families during the Exchange of the Peace. During this time, children will worship and learn together in a service specially designed for their own formation and development. Children’s Chapel is offered during the Program Year.
Nursery – Children five and under are invited to stay in childcare with our Nursery Attendant, Jane Fischer, and a nursery volunteer. Care is provided Sunday mornings from 7:55 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. as well as during special services such as the early Christmas Eve service. Whenever possible, nursery time will include a short Bible story or lesson to help little ones take little steps to big faith. If you have questions, or would like to volunteer in the nursery, please contact the nursery parent liaisons, Heather and Patrick Cummings.
Children’s Choral Offerings (PreK-5th grade) are God’s gift to the entire congregation for deepening our expressions of prayer and praise. They are also an important opportunity for our children to learn the sacred music that is a central component of Christian education and formation. To optimize this opportunity, we encourage all children to participate. Angela Jones teaches the musical selection to children in Sunday School in the weeks prior, and children rehearse in the church that morning at 10am. Please do join us!
Special Children’s Programs – In addition to regular Sunday activities, we also offer special programs and events for children throughout the year. Some examples are:
- October: Blessing of the Animals
- November-December: Advent Wreath Making, Christmas Pageant
- February: Secret Pal’s Breakfast, Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper
- March-April: Palm Weaving on Palm Sunday, Easter Egg Hunt on Easter Sunday, Communion Instruction
Please feel free to contact Kim Powell, Director of Christian Formation, at firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have further questions. We hope St. Matthew’s will be a place of worship, sustenance and welcome for your family.