St. Mark's Episcopal Church
       111 West Shore Road ~ Warwick, RI ~ 401.737.3127










Christian Formation for Youth - New for 2018-2019

Early in May a group of folks committed to providing the best possible Faith Formation Programs for the youth of St. Mark’s met for a brainstorming session.

 

Our work began with the understanding that times have changed since the first Sunday Schools opened during the Industrial Revolution. Our charge is to meet the spiritual needs of parents and children in the 21st century.

 

We recognize, mainly through lack of consistent participation, that what we are doing isn’t working for our families today. We also noted some things that are working: our once a month teen group and our one-time programs like Road to Emmaus and the Nativity with Legos. Attendance at these formation events is consistently good.

 

At the same time all of the current research tells us that our youth belong first in church. Christian Formation begins by worshiping together in community with family and friends – and participating in that worship as age and ability allows. Here’s a link to a blog that talks about this:

http://www.chadbird.com/blog/2018/3/22/the-church-doesnt-need-childrens-church#.WusXORar3LN.mailto

 

All of us brings this to the beginning stages of planning for 2018-19 and we would welcome your input as we move forward.

 

Nursery – childcare will be provided by a rotating group of teens and adults in a dedicated area in the back of the church. We’ll experiment with this during the summer. Books and soft toys will be provided. If parents want a separate place for childcare during the first part of the service they need to commit to help staff it and use it regularly.

 

Seasonally (4-5 times during the academic year) Mother Susan and partners will provide formation opportunities on a Saturday morning for grades K-4. The first will be early in the fall and will focus on “Why we do what we do in church.” There will be stories, teaching, practice, games, and snacks at each of these 90 minute sessions. First session is October 13th 9-10:30 am.

 

Middle School - grades 5-7 will be held the first Sunday of each month following the 10 am service. This will include selected Connect curriculum along with other activities focusing on worship and ministry, and lunch! First class is October 14th (to avoid Columbus Day weekend).

 

Teens will continue to meet the first Sunday of the month beginning October 14th (to avoid Columbus Day weekend). There will also be classes during the month of August focusing on preparation for confirmation December 2, 2018.

 

Our Christian Education for Youth programs are a work in progress as we seek to serve Christ together while meeting the needs of our families.

 

In Christ,

Ron Bailey – Judye Nazareth – Elisa King – Patricia Hanchett – Kristen Bessette –

Mother Susan Wrathall