Hints for Children, Family Members and Other Congregants
People of all ages belong in our faith community. When we worship together it can be an enriching experience for all. We want every person to feel welcome, comfortable, loved, and respected within our community. We believe for someone to find a home within the community we must nurture them along each step of the way.
Preparing for worship
How to make worship more fulfilling for children.Most children thrive in environments of routine and ritual. Therefore our church environment has the potential for incredible spiritual satisfaction. However, once a week is too infrequent for young children to learn this routine alone. Bringing church into the home can help children not only establish a ritual routine but also make the whole family more spiritually intentional. Here are a few examples of how you can prepare
- Have times of silent meditation, gratitude, and/or prayer before meals or at bedtime.
- Talk about special memories of worship times.
- Practice the affirmation, and mission statement perhaps by lighting a family chalice.
- Create a Saturday night ritual…picking out clothing, talk about joys and concerns, RE classes.
- Take a tour of the building when it is empty to get to know where everything is.
- Talk about how different parts of worship are important to you and why.
Hints for Family Members or Responsible Adults
- Help your child learn with gentle reminders of what we do and how we are in the sanctuary.
- Explain what is going on during worship and answer all questions that your child may have honestly, with a quiet whisper.
- Remind your child it’s OK to do quiet activities that help them focus and be present.
- At any time you are welcome to move to the back of the sanctuary to stretch or move to the fireside room downstairs.
- Nursing parents are welcome in any part of our building.
Hints for Children
We know you are still learning how to be in church.
These suggestions will help.
- Sit near the front so you can see what is going on.
- Follow along with the order of service.
- Stand and join in when we sing. We need your voice.
- Come up and listen to the Story For All Ages.
- Share a joy or concern when there is something important you would like to share with us.
- Share a quiet time with us when it is meditation time.
- Please try to walk and talk quietly when you are in our special space together.
- If you want a break, or somewhere you can move around the fireside room is open to you.
Hints for Congregants
- Recognize your role as models for children.
- Welcome children as you would adults and learn their names.
- With permission, occasionally invite children to sit with you during worship to share your experience.
- Offer to help a parent bounce a fussy baby or calm an unhappy child.
- Treat children as worship participants rather than performers, and laugh with not at them.
- Show patience and gratitude towards what children bring to our community and an open heart to what they can teach you just as much as you teach them.