We feel that teaching kids to worship (not just sit still) is a critical part of a child’s spiritual development, and helps ensure church attendance as young adults. For this reason, it is important that our children get as much out of the Sunday worship service as possible!The children stay in the sanctuary for the Lord’s Prayer, a few hymns, the Old and New Testament readings, the offering, and the Children’s Sermon. Right before the sermon we take our children out downstairs for their own Bible study and coordinating activities in Children’s Church.
Let’s face it, keeping a child content during a sermon can be a serious endeavor. We like to think that the struggle is worth it in the end, but the typical result is that neither the adult or the child gets much out of the sermon. In order to make sure that both the adult and the child have an experience that allows them to learn and grow, we take our kids out of the sanctuary right after the the New Testament reading for Children’s Church.
This gives the kids a time for their own Bible study and a short activity that reinforces the focus of the week’s Bible story. Because children are more likely to learn and live what they’ve discussed in church when their families reinforce it, we distribute take-home pages. These pages encourage families to read the Bible story with their child and includes activities and questions to emphasize real life application.
This is the primary place where kids build their Bible foundation. We have special classes that help our children learn about God from the time they are toddlers. As kids get older they learn more complex stories and concepts. From the time they are toddlers, our children start learning how to pray. Once they are in kindergarten, they are given the opportunity to pray aloud in front of their Sunday School class. Kindergarten is also the time that our children begin to learn how to use their Bibles. Over time these skills are honed so that our kids can enter the youth group with a working knowledge of the fundamentals.
While the adults have their own Bible study on Wednesday night, the children go to Room 100 in the basement to enjoy a variety of learning experiences. They enjoy children’s choir and handbells during the school year. In the summer we offer Mustard Seed Ministry, a study unit on gardening as part of our Hillcrest Farmers Market.
Our PHBC Children’s Team plans an exciting and fun events for our children throughout the year. They include outings, mission excursions to places like Ronald McDonald House, parties, and more. The children are active in service/missions projects by collecting pull-tabs for donation to the Ronald McDonald House, filling shoe-boxes with small gifts for Operation Christmas Child, and making cards and letters for our homebound members.