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Agape Kids!

but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, & do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.”  -Matthew 19:14 (NRSV)

 

At Agape Community Church, as Jesus did, we welcome children of all ages as integral members of the body of Christ, & we welcome the sounds & activity that accompany them!  The presence of children is a gift to the church & a sign of a healthy church. 

 

To the parents of young children, may we suggest…

*Relax!  God put the wiggle in children; don’t feel you have to suppress it in God’s house.  All are welcome!

*Sit toward the front where it is easier for your little ones to see & hear what’s going on at the altar.  They tire of seeing the backs of others’ heads.  *Encourage your children to participate, or better yet join them in the altar during praise & worship & encourage them follow your example in worship.

*Explain the parts of the service, how they can participate & what is appropriate behavior during the different parts of the service.

*Fussy, hungry, little ones in need of changing or extra wiggly infants & toddlers are also welcome to play, accompanied by a caregiver, in the “cry room” in the back of the sanctuary.  The service is broadcast through speakers into this room so that parents can still take in the service while caring for their children or you can follow along with the live Facebook broadcast on the church Facebook page.

*Children are always welcome to stay in the service with their custodial adult if you prefer not to have them attend children’s church.

*There are ribbons & flags in the black cabinet just inside the double doors at the front right of the sanctuary that you are welcome to use to worship with your child during the praise and worship time.

 

To the other members…

Please welcome our children & give a smile of encouragement to their parents.  The way we welcome children directly affects the way they respond to the church, God & each other.  Be aware that children’s “mode of being” in worship is intrinsically energetic & more vocal & physical than that of adults.  A few tips for engaging our families with small children include:

*Greet & learn the names of the young children (& families) who sit near you in worship.

*Offer to help with a child during worship, especially if another child in the family is especially fussy or upset.

*Helping kids learn how to worship, children learn to worship by participating & will learn best by following your example.  Offer to help by letting a nearby child worship with you;

*Invite a child to serve alongside you as greeters, ushers, etc.

*Recognize that certain conditions or disabilities don’t present physically, & some children (& adults) may make noises or act in ways that seem strange or upsetting, but are perfectly normal for their situation.

 

 

 

 

Our Children’s Church Services

Toddler Church is designed for kids 2 through 4 years of age.  They learn Bible stories, sing songs, play, have snacks, & participate in activities designed for children their age.  They should be checked-in by the custodial adult they came with shortly before service starts in the room to the left of the fireplace off of the street side entrance in the foyer.  Their pick up card will allow them to be picked up in that room immediately following service.

 

Agape Kids is designed for kids age 5 through 6th grade.  This is a fun & interactive service where kids have fun, learn to apply Bible truth to their lives & experience God.  Shortly after Praise & Worship children age 5 through 6th grade will be invited to come up front where we will pray over them & their teachers & then dismiss them to their service.  They meet in the fellowship hall at the back of the church & are dismissed through the side door at the back of the sanctuary.  They finish at approximately 11:30 am.  If service is still going they will be dismissed to rejoin the adult service at that time.  If service is dismissed prior to 11:30 you can pick them up in the fellowship hall if you must leave right away, otherwise we appreciate you letting them finish their service.  They will be given a take home page that will reinforce what was taught.  We encourage you to facilitate the discussion & activities in your home during the week.

 

Children in 7th grade & beyond are encouraged to be a part of the main service or may volunteer to help with children’s church.  They are invited to be a part of Elevate (our youth service) for 6th grade through 12th grade on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 to 8:15pm.  This is held in the fellowship hall at the back of the church.