Children and Young People
Children and young people in our Church
(see below and also attached document in Word format)
At the Church of the Good Shepherd we welcome children of all ages and are delighted to have been presented with the Family Friendly Church Award by Bishop Andrew on Sunday 19th March 2017.
Children and young people are a valued and integral part of the life of our church. At the Church of the Good Shepherd, we provide worship, groups and activities to help them grow in faith.
ALL-AGE SERVICES - On the first Sunday of the month there is a is a shorter simpler Communion Service suitable for all ages. The words of the service and the hymns are projected on an overhead screen. Younger members of our congregation often help with these services and our Festival services such as Harvest and Mothering Sunday. There are normally no separate activities for children on these occasions, although there is a small room to the side of the hall set up with books and soft toys for those who need ‘time out’ with babies or very young children.
FOR BABIES AND PRE-SCHOOLERS
LITTLE FISHES – A nursery service suitable for parents, carers and their children. This is held in the Conference Rooms at Cox Green Community Centre on Wednesdays during term time. Children and their carers are welcome to arrive from 9.30 am onwards for drinks, biscuits and time to chat. Toys and other activities are provided for the children.
We finish with a short service (15-20 minutes) with action songs, stories, rhymes and a few simple prayers. (See the current Little Fishes programme.)
On Sunday mornings, during our 10am service, a room with toys adjacent to the Main Hall is available for parents to use with their small children if necessary. We also offer ‘Happy Bags’ for young children to use in church.
Our Sunday School known as Sunday a.m! caters for children from 3 years upwards. We meet on Sundays at 10am (except Family Service days).
There are special groups, according to age, including CHOGS2gether for the young teens, which provide opportunities to learn more about the Christian faith. (Follow links for current programmes).
The children rejoin their parents in church during the service.
Alternatively children may be left in the care of the Sunday am! staff and collected at 11.15.
ADMISSION TO COMMUNION – In recent years we have been given permission by the Bishop to admit children to communion prior to Confirmation.
A Parish policy is in place.
Children who are regular members of our church and have the support of their parents undergo a special preparation course. They are then admitted to communion for the first time during a Sunday service. Others may still choose to wait until their Confirmation.
FUN AFTERNOONS - On some days during the year we offer fun afternoons where, using craft, music, film and games, we learn about our world, the Bible and God’s love for us. Though these Fun Afternoons are most suitable for primary school age children, younger children are welcome but must be accompanied by a responsible adult. Look on our website and church notice board for the date of the next fun time. Registration forms for the Afternoon Workshops can be picked up at Cox Green Community Centre from the Church Office or the Centre Office.
FOR YOUNG PEOPLE
‘CHOGS2GETHER’ – is our new group for young people of secondary school age. This meets twice a month at 10 am for discussion, drama and other activities related to the Bible story or theme of the week.
The young people join everyone in church after the prayers of intercession, and may come up for a blessing or communion.
YOUTH EVENTS are organised on an occasional basis.
We plan to set up a more regular youth group.
Young people who wish to are welcome to join the choir, help with serving and Sunday am!, and join in all areas of church life.
CONFIRMATION – Confirmation courses are offered each year for young people who feel ready to make this commitment. Contact the Church office for further information.