Sunday Worship: 8:30, 9:40, & 11 a.m.


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Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14)


News & Events

Updated November, 2018

August 12: Promotion Sunday
August 29: Church-wide kick-off celebration
September 5: Elementary Expedition 1st semester kick-off
September 21: 3rd grade Bible retreat
September 23: 3rd grade Bible presentation
October 7: Putt-Putt Golf and Games
October 28: Fall Festival
November 14: Advent Workshop
December 2: Alternative Christmas
December 8: Milk and Muffins: Journey to Bethlehem
December 9: Plum Pudding
December 24: Family Christmas Eve Service
January 9: Elementary Expedition 2nd semester kick-off
February 2-3: Ignite! (4/5 grade retreat)
February 22-23: Created by God (5/6 graders only)
March 6: Ash Wednesday Worship
April 14: Palm Sunday
April 19: Good Friday
April 20: Easter Egg Hunt
April 21: Easter
June 5-7: Weeknight VBS
June 10-14: Weekday VBS
July 8-12: Mission Camp (rising 5/6 graders)
July 15-20: Lakeshore Camp
Select Mondays in Summer: Mission and Movie Mondays
Select Wednesdays in Summer: Dodgeball at OLEC
Select Thursdays in Summer: Poolpalooza (rising 6th graders)

Upcoming Programs

Elementary Expedition (Wednesdays, September 5 – November 14 and January 9 – April 17)
Our mid-week program provides a variety of opportunities for children to experience Christian fellowship and develop a closer relationship to Christ. This is our children’s ministry equivalent of “youth group.” We begin with kid-friendly dinner at 5:30 in the Huddle, move to child-friendly worship from 6:00-6:30 in the chapel, and then close with small groups where we enjoy discussion, games, and crafts. We end at 7:15 in the children’s wing. Dinner is $3 at the door or online.

Advent Workshop (November 14)
In preparation for the Advent season, families are invited to attend this special mid-November event geared towards children of all ages. Families can create their own Advent wreath, make a block nativity set, and have fun with other Advent crafts. There are light refreshments. This event is free to all and no registration is required.

Alternative Christmas (December 2)
On this morning, elementary-aged children will have an opportunity to shop for gifts for family and friends. Each gift is $5, of beautiful quality, wrapped, and tagged. Children will also learn about free-trade and mission-oriented gifts and will learn about being a purposeful giver. Preschool children may shop between worship hours or after church ends. There will be elves available to help with the shopping so all parents can enjoy a surprise on Christmas morning. No registration necessary; bring $5 for each gift you intend to purchase.

Journey to Bethlehem/Milk and Muffins (December 8)
Families with young children (and older people who are children at heart) are invited to attend this special GUMC tradition. Children will walk the path of Jesus’ birth. They will begin with the angels, move to Bethlehem for Jesus’ birth, visit the shepherds, and finish with the wise men. After learning the reason we share gifts at Christmas, children will have a chance to share their wish list with the Jolly Ol’ Guy himself. This event is free to all and no registration is required.

December Dodgeball (December 20 and 27)
Kids in grades 3-5 are invited to come burn off some energy and have fun with friends at Dodgeball! We will meet in the Owings Life Enrichment Center from 1-3. Guests are welcome; free to all and no registration is required.

Ignite! (4/5 grade retreat February 2-3)
4/5 graders travel to a local retreat facility for a one-night retreat with a focus on worship, fellowship, and team building. This weekend is a lot of fun, action packed, and full of growth as we learn to worship in a more meaningful way. Online registration opens January 1.

Created by God (February 22-23)
Created by God is a program resource designed to communicate to fifth and sixth graders that we are a fantastic creation made by God. The topics of human sexuality, values, and relationships are approached in a frank, honest, and Bible-based manner. This is a Friday night and Saturday morning course for tweens; parental attendance is required for two sessions. There will be a parent meeting January 23 to answer any questions before registration opens January 24.

Easter Egg Hunt (April 20)
Our annual Easter Egg Hunt will be held at our beautiful McVay Gardens Park the day before Easter. This fun and festive event provides photo opportunities galore! In addition to the traditional egg hunt, children can enjoy a petting zoo, fun crafts, face painting, and much more! The Easter Bunny makes an appearance as well.

Vacation Bible School
Weeknight (June 5-7; 5:30-8:00 p.m.) This three-day version of VBS has all the fun of the weekday VBS in a condensed form. Dinner will be served at 5:30 followed by story, games, music, and more!
Weekday (June 10-14; 9:00 a.m. – noon) This week is packed full of friends, fun, and the incredible message of God’s love.
Registration will open online April 1.

Mission Camp (July 8-12)
This week of discovery leads children who are entering grades 5 and 6 through a variety of mission opportunities. Children will work in inner-church missions, urban missions, and rural missions. This is a transforming week for children as they taste the types of missional opportunities available and begin deciding where they feel most lead to serve. Online registration opens May 15.

Lakeshore (July 15-20)
“Away Camp” is a life-changing experience for children. We travel as a group to Lakeshore in Eva, TN for a week of frolic and fellowship in the woods. Mrs. Lisa will be on site as the camp leader the week of July 15-20 and many of our youth will be counselors that week. If this week doesn’t work for you, check out Lakeshore’s website for alternate weeks. This is a great camp! Register online through Lakeshore’s website.

Children’s Music
Choir (Sundays, September 9 – December 9 and January 6 – May 5; 5:00-6:00 p.m., children’s wing)

Team Sports

Playing team sports is a wonderful way to build friendships, confidence, and a love for active fun. If your child is interested in team sports, please consult our opportunities offered through our Health and Recreation Ministry at the Owings Life Enrichment Center (OLEC).

Ways to Join the Children’s Ministry Team

With school beginning in just a few short weeks, summer will quickly come to an end. We are planning our programming for children this upcoming school year and want you to consider how you can work with us to create a vibrant ministry. There are a number of volunteer opportunities. Please read through these and find a place you feel your talents can best be used. We would love to see all families represented in our ministry. Just like most ministries, you will find you get much more back than you could ever give. Please prayerfully consider your role.

Sunday Morning Kids Quest Mentor: This crucial role is on the front lines of ministry with children. These individuals come each Sunday, building relationship with the children and sharing the Good News. Mentors use lessons to follow up the main lesson taught in large group. All lessons and materials are provided; you only need to bring a servant’s heart and love for God and children. Men, we need YOU to lead our boy groups. Time requirement includes 1 hour 15 minutes on Sunday morning and about 15 minutes of prep each week. We understand work and travel and will have substitutes for these occasions. Please contact Lisa Pierce if you are interested in this role.

Sunday Morning Kids Quest Host: These individuals assist mentors with lessons and kid control each week. This is a month-long commitment and is incredibly important to the success of each lesson. Please register online using Sign Up Genius. (Consider signing up for more than one month.)

Sunday Morning Stepping Stones Teachers: These individuals present the weekly small-group lesson in the preschool classes. After large group time, each group will return to their classroom for the small group lesson. All lessons and materials are provided. The length of commitment is one month. Please contact Kristin Dickerson to volunteer for this ministry.

Grace Class Leader: Grace is our class designed for elementary-aged children with special needs. We need teachers for this class as well as shadows to go with children if they chose to enter the Kids Quest program. Volunteers can either serve for one month or once a month for the school year; commitment is about one hour 15 minutes each week. All materials and training are provided.

Elementary Expedition Small Group Leader: These individuals will join us on Wednesday nights for dinner, worship, and small group. We will begin at 5:30 with dinner in the Huddle, move to the chapel for worship, and then break into small groups and games.  We will end at 7:15. All lessons and materials are provided. This is a semester commitment running for 10 weeks (excluding fall break and ending at Thanksgiving for the semester). We will resume in January and run up to spring break. Please contact Lisa Pierce if you are interested in helping with this ministry. (If you are not able to make it in time for the dinner, you are welcome to join us at 6:00 for the rest of the evening.)

Elementary Expedition Food Prep: These individuals purchase and prepare the meal for Elementary Expedition (Wednesday night) each week. The meals are very “kid-friendly” including favorites such as chicken nuggets, pizza, hot dogs, etc. No big-time cooking is necessary, just heating and serving. Time commitment each week is approximately one hour for purchase of food and two hours for preparing/serving/cleaning up. This job could be divided if multiple people work together. This is also a wonderful way for a Sunday school class to serve. Please contact Lisa Pierce if you are interested in serving in this ministry area.

Kids Quest Band Leader: This person needs to be willing to organize and rehearse with a group of youth each week (scheduled at your convenience). The band will present two songs each week and will include a guitar, drums, and vocalist (minimally). This person does not need to serve on Sunday mornings. Please contact Lisa Pierce if you are interested in working in this ministry area.

Kids Quest Environment Prep Team: Our curriculum has monthly themes which require environment changes and props. This team will develop the environment each month for our theme as well as assemble props for the weekly stories. This will require about five hours a month and is not a Sunday morning commitment. Please contact Lisa Pierce or Callie Beaver if you are interested in helping in this ministry area.

Kids Quest Lesson Prep Team: Our curriculum has monthly themes which require environment changes and props. This team will develop the environment each month for our theme as well as assemble props for the weekly stories. This will require about five hours a month and is not a Sunday morning commitment. Please contact Lisa Pierce or Callie Beaver if you are interested in helping in this ministry area.

Special Events Team: This team works seasonally for special events such as Fall Festival, Advent Workshop, Milk and Muffins, etc. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are interested in this ministry area.

1 Corinthians 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
Please prayerfully consider where you can serve in our children’s ministry, doing it all for the glory of God.

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Sunday School

We meet on Sunday mornings at both 9:40 and 11:00. Children begin each hour in a large-group setting in the Huddle (room 242). During this time, we share the daily Bible story through skits as well as a time of worship. From the Huddle, we break into small groups which consists of children the same age and gender as well as adult and youth mentors. These groups meet in classrooms in the children’s education wing; doors are clearly marked for each group.

Following the large-group time, children move to their classrooms for some follow-up small-group activities, reinforcing the weekly Bible lesson. Parents pick up their children in the classrooms in the children’s wing.

There are three main concepts we want children in grades K-5 to understand, and all our lessons are directed towards these ideas. Before graduating our program, we want all children to understand and be able to apply these three biblical truths:

  1. I need to make the wise choice. (Wisdom)
  2. I can trust God no matter what. (Faith)
  3. I should treat others the way I want to be treated. (Friendship)

While every lesson is different, there is an element in each which leads back to these concepts. We want the children to understand the Scriptures are alive and relevant to today. Therefore, our lessons are active, engaging, and hands-on.

Wednesday Nights

Wednesday Nights: Elementary Expedition has taken a break in our Wednesday night gatherings until after Labor Day. We will resume with an exciting format, similar to that of youth group. Elementary children and youth will gather for a kid-friendly dinner at 5:30 in the Huddle ($3 at the door). We will move from dinner to a time of family worship in a relaxed environment with music, lesson, and activity designed specifically for our children and youth. At approximately 6:30, we will move from our worship time to small groups in the children’s wing. Pick up is at 7:15 in the children’s wing hallway.

Music Program

Sunday nights, 5-6 p.m.
Music enriches the worship experience and singing in a choir offers an opportunity for children to serve the church as they help lead worship. We have an incredible choir program for children ages 3 and up, leading worship 3-4 times a year and having seasonal concerts. All choirs meet in the children’s education wing. Children not yet in kindergarten must have a parent or chaperone accompany them to their rehearsals and will meet from 5-5:45 p.m.

Children's Ministry Staff

Where To Find Us

The children’s area includes the children’s wing and The Huddle (room 242), highlighted in white: