We are a family-friendly church; and as Kahlil Gilbran stated, "... children are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself". With this in mind, we offer Kidspace, Sunday School, and involvement in our Community Sundays.
Our church has created an area within the sanctuary itself which we call “Kidspace”, equipped with crayons, colouring books and toys, that is just for children. Kidspace is the perfect place to help your children meet up with others and have fun while you are meeting with friends and getting ready for worship.
Sunday School is very important to us and it’s very popular with the children who attend.
“Guided by the Lord, our Sunday School seeks to prepare children for lives of regeneration - lives of growing, spiritual awareness and joy, based on Biblical values of kindness, faithfulness, integrity, self-responsibility and service to others.”
Our strategy for fulfilling this mission is known by the acronym “LOVE”. LOVE stands for Learning, Openness, Vitality and Emerging:
“Learning” – fostering a child’s love for the stories of God in ways that are creative, challenging and fun.
“Openness” – a commitment to Sunday School as a safe, affirming place where every child is welcome and every path to God is honoured.
“Vitality” – bringing the stories of God alive by making them immediately relevant to the life of the child.
“Emerging” – providing opportunities for children to take on more responsibility and emerge as the leaders of tomorrow.
To help us accomplish these goals, we employ a well-known curriculum package, “Seasons of the Spirit”. This is lectionary-based which means that children learn the same Bible stories at the same time as their elders and caregivers. This provides a meaning conversations to share about God through the week in the home.
Sunday School itself is offered as a regular program from September to June. Our summer months are taught week-by-week, as needed. Our coordinator is a trained teacher.
Classes follow a set pattern, with opening and closing rituals and prayers. Children then return to the sanctuary before the close of the service for “show and tell” sharing what they learned. This is a very popular part of our worship and it enables the whole community to get to know and care about the children. At Good Shepherd we take to heart the African proverb, “It’s takes a village to raise a child.”
There are various children’s services during the year for which the children practice for some weeks prior: the Christmas Pageant, Earth Day Sunday, and our uniquely Swedenborgian, Driving Out the Dragon. These events showcase children’s talents and give them a chance to take a leading role in worship.
We also have special monthly Community Sunday Services which take into the account the importance and meaning of family. These inclusive monthly events encourage all ages to bring their talents and gifts to our Community Worship, including our children.