Whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. -Matthew 18:5
We seek to provide spiritual formation for our children through education, worship, and connections in our community; to bring families together for formation, fellowship, faith, and fun; and to celebrate and nurture the spiritual milestones of our children.
What are the worship opportunities for Children at St. Thomas’?
Worship is the center of our church community, and as such, children are welcome at all of our worship services! If you are looking for a service geared specifically toward families with young children, check out our First Steps to Worship service. Intended for families with children ages 4 and younger, First Steps meets every Sunday of the year at 9:15am in Haas Hall.
What is expected as far as behavior during worship?
Church is a wonderful opportunity for children to learn how to pray and get involved in a community activity around faith, and also a great chance to continue learning self-control and respect for others. Because this learning is a process and not a product, we understand that there will be wiggles and giggles, crying and sighing. There is an Ark cabinet in the Narthex [entry space] that is stocked with coloring sheets and crayons, books and quiet activities. If your child is having a difficult time, to teach them respect and awareness, we do encourage parents to remove the youngster in the same way you would at a movie or the dinner table. Walk with them, talk with them, calm them and explain what is happening in the church. The basic philosophy here is that if your child is old enough for school, then sitting through church and being part of the a faith community with lots of involvement opportunities during worship is completely within his or her grasp! We want them with us! For younger children, there is a Nursery.
What about the Nursery?
Our Nursery Ministry is located right across the hall from Haas Hall and is intended for infants-4 years old.
How do I get my child involved with the Chorister program?
What an exciting question! For the Chorister program, Derrick Goff, our music minister is the person with whom to speak.
What happens after Church is over?
DISCOVERY HOUR! Our Church School program for Pre-K through 5th grade happens in the School House building most Sundays, mid-September-May. We call this time together the “Discovery Hour.” Registration for Discovery Hour is online (include link please)—a child can jump in at any time!
The Discovery Hour is from 11:05a.m. (or end of church)-12:00pm.
Are there Special Events for Children at St. Thomas’?
The year is full of special events for Children! St. Francis Day Blessing of the Animals, All Saints’ Day, the Christmas Pageant, the Annual Easter Egg Hunt, Discovery Hour Celebration, Messy Church Events, and Vacation Church School during the summer, just to name a few!
How are children included in Outreach?
All during the Church School year, children have the opportunity to get involved in the care and connection with people in need. Our biggest event in the annual PAC-A-THON where we pack between 15,000-20,000 meals through Stop Hunger Now. With ample Outreach projects happening within the life of the parish, children are always welcome to get involved, too. In the past years, Church School classes have taken on individual projects, as well.
What are the ways I can get involved with Children’s Ministries?
The Children’s Commission would love to help you plug into the vibrancy of the Children’s Programs here at St. Thomas’. There are opportunities for teaching, shepherding, Commission-serving, project leading, Christmas Pageant helper, Vacation Bible School assisting, and much, much more!