While children are always welcome to stay with their parents during Sunday morning worship, many of our elementary-age children and some of our middle-school youth make it challenging for their parents if they are required to stay for the entire service. After the Time for All Age portion of each service, children who have outgrown nursery care are invited to go to the Children’s Village. Here they engage in community-building activities that allow them to live out our values of kindness, meaning-making, and inclusion as they play.
In the fall and spring, we go outdoors to build forts in the beautiful woods behind the church building. When the weather turns colder, we turn our building skills to the cardboard-box town of Friendlyville. For over a year, children have been considering what a community needs, negotiating sharing of resources and questions about group vs. individual decision-making, as they build and “live” in this imaginary community. Older children take on leadership and teaching roles as they help younger children with both physical and social skills. High school students may volunteer as assistants.