St. Andrew's Vision for Children
Why raise children in a faith community?
Church is the rare place where children are joined together with people of all generations, realizing that they are part of something that is bigger than any of us. They are joining in a story that has been going on for thousands of years, a story of people called by God to bring love, joy, peace, and justice to the world. At St. Andrew's, children join a long legacy of those who have been loved, and cared for, by their elders.
Children in Worship
Welcome Children! You are a very important part of our church family and we welcome you to worship with us. Both our Preschoolers (3yrs-5yrs) and our Elementary Children (Kindergarten-5th grade) are encouraged to join us for the first 10 minutes of worship in the sanctuary. After that, we will all sing a song together as you leave the sanctuary and continue to worship in your Sunday School classrooms.
Our elementary Sunday School program, Lighthouse, allows children to explore their faith, using excellent curriculum called Rio, while supplementing learning with "Godly Play," crafts, stories, and games.
On the first Sunday of every month, the LightHouse (Elementary) Sunday School Class returns to set the Communion table and join the church family for the Lord's Supper.
Our staff and volunteers introduce children to the nature of God -- creative, kind, wise and loving -- as revealed in Jesus Christ, the Son of God. They explore the stories in the Old and New Testaments, and are encouraged to understand their own place in God's family. Our Lighthouse (Elementary) Director and utilizes the Rio Curriculum for Class, which he teaches with a rotation of volunteers.
Our Christian Education Ministry seeks to nurture your child from birth into adulthood, and to provide support to your family at every new stage. We have up-to-date facilities including a bright nursery; well-equipped pre-school; and imaginative, carefully designed Sunday School classrooms. We have an active partnership with families, staff, and carefully screened volunteers who teach and minister to children. All activities are age appropriate and properly supervised.
Who is on the Children's ministry team?
Our Children's Ministry team is lead by Pastor of Life Development Jeremy Watson, and includes Carol Patterson, Marilyn Aberle, Becky Schiefelbein, and Carolyn Gazeley. Between them they are parents and grandparents of all ages, with a wealth of experience in education and children's ministry. The team is supported by Marie Dolson, a professional educator, mom, and certified American Sign Language Interpreter, as well as Charlie Heniken and Chuck Stilson, grandfathers and favorite "volunteer shepherds" of the children of our congregation.
Tell me about the Nursery and Pre-School staff....
St Andrew's employs professional child care staff to watch over babies, toddlers and preschoolers during our worship service. The children are well-cared for and have a great time with our Nursery Director, Ashley, and the screened volunteers who assist her every week.
Do you have a child safety policy?
Yes, St. Andrew's performs background checks on all professional staff and volunteers. Parents are welcome in all classrooms at any time. Our minimum child care and classroom staffing is two adults (or one adult and one high school age youth) per room whenever children are present.
Parents of infants and toddlers leave their cell phone numbers so they can be contacted in worship. They are also welcome to stay in the nursery or preschool room during the service, if they like. Both rooms have large windows to allow parents and members of the congregation to observe children from the main hall.