What will faith development programming for children and youth look like this fall at MLUC?
I’ve been asking myself that with varying degrees of curiosity, despair, and determination for months. Luckily, I do not have to figure out the answers all by myself! In August we asked every family with children and/or youth in the church to give their opinions on a detailed survey; and at the end of the month I met with the Children’s Faith Development Committee to process the responses and begin making plans.
Whatever we do, it needs to help build resilience, create a sense of belonging, and help our families over the threshold of this very strange year. Here’s what we are envisioning right now. We know that what we are doing may need to shift and change in some respects and real needs become clearer and we try things and find they don’t work.
We will offer CARE to all our families. Every family who wants to will receive some mail ministry (birthday cards, thinking of you, postcards, etc.) And maybe some other surprises. No further commitment of time or energy is required, although all are welcome to engage in one of the other types of participation as well.
We will offer regular drop-in CONNECTION opportunities. This will include things like onsite social action opportunities similar to those we’ve run this summer (food pantry parade, chalking event, stuffie sleepover, etc.), fun virtual events or projects, etc. You may need to sign up for some of these, or just come by or call in as your schedule allows. Kids can also choose to earn badges in spiritual practices and church rituals (like lighting the chalice, etc.)
And, we will offer monthly classes for kids whose families are ready to COMMIT to an ongoing learning opportunity. More details about these classes will be available very soon.
If you are an adult who would love to help make one or more of these things happen, please reach out to me soon. We are not aiming to have everything up and running at the same exact moment in the middle of September but instead will be rolling out programs as our staff and volunteer time and energy allows, hopefully with everything at least in place by the beginning of October.
Note: theme programming (Contemplative Conversations, Vespers, Dinner Church, and Watch Party) will return for adults in October!