Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.” Matthew 19.14
At First Presbyterian Church, we believe that our children are gifts from God to be treasured and nurtured. They are indeed the future of the church! We seek to minister to the needs of children and their families with classes and activities that build faith, promote fellowship and create a sense of responsibility for mission in God’s name.
Baptism and Communion are the two sacraments celebrated within the Presbyterian tradition. Families who desire to have their infants or children baptized are asked to contact the minister for a Baptism conference. Once baptized, children are welcomed to the Lord’s Table for participation in communion. Periodically, special classes are offered to explain the sacrament and prepare the children for this central event of the faith community.
Each year, usually in early June, our children are invited to participate in a week-long bible school event. Traditionally, our church partners with a number of other area congregations to share the joys and responsibilities of this annual endeavor. VBS is open to all children who are potty-trained toddlers up through and including the fifth grade. The format includes Bible study, singing, recreation, and crafts, and the week concludes with a special lunch program in which the kids demonstrate and enact the things they have learned. Older youth and parents help to make this an experience not to be missed!
VBS 2020 – as of 4/16/2020 we have made the decision to postpone VBS due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We will update you once a new date or plan has been established.
A crib nursery for infants and those up to 2 years of age is provided on Sunday mornings during Sunday School and worship. It is located on the first floor of the educational building near the covered driveway entrance. For the safety of your child and others, we ask that you bring your child to the nursery only when he or she is well and has not run a fever for 24 hours. We also ask that you notify the nursery staff of any medical conditions or allergies, and that you provide any special items your child might need (bottles, pacifier, special blankets, etc.) as well as disposable diapers and a change of clothes.
A toddler nursery for 3 and 4 year olds is provided in a room adjacent to the Crib Nursery during the Sunday worship service. It is currently staffed by volunteer church members who have completed Safe Sanctuary training as well as a paid nursery attendant. Children in this age group are welcome to attend the worship service and then come to the Toddler Nursery following the Children’s Sermon as well.
Christian Education is an important part of our ministry here at First Presbyterian. The classes are currently divided into three groups as follows:
- Pre-K (children ages 3 and 4)
- Kindergarten – 2nd Grade
- 3rd – 5th Grade
During the school year, church school classes for toddlers through high school seniors are held each Sunday morning from 9:45 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Following Sunday School, all ages are invited to Lacy Hall for refreshments and a time of fellowship.
The first Sunday of the fall quarter (typically the Sunday after Labor Day) is known as “Rally Day,” when we have a special time together celebrating the beginning of a new year in Sunday School. The Christian Education Committee recognizes all 3rd graders with a Bible on Rally Day, and also recognizes Sunday School participants for their good attendance.
As you enter the sanctuary with your child, you may pick up one of the age-appropriate Children’s worship bulletins and a worship bag in the Narthex to help them feel more comfortable in the experience of worship. As part of our worship service, we offer a message for children fifth grade and younger entitled “Time with the Children.” During this portion of the service, the children are invited to join the speaker on the chancel steps for a special message or children’s sermon and they can also place an offering in the offering basket. Following this time, older children may return to their seats in the sanctuary while children kindergarten age and younger are invited to be cared for by parent volunteers in the Toddler Nursery. Ushers help escort the younger children to the Toddler Nursery.
Our Children’s Ministry Coordinator schedules a monthly gathering, typically on Wednesday afternoons, called Parents’ Afternoon Out that provides activities focused on faith development in an environment of fun and fellowship.