Fr Mark Gilbert from Chichester Diocese encouraged all Forward in Faith parishes to get their young people to Walsingham. The Children’s pilgrimage on a weekend in Lent and the Youth pilgrimage in July/August can be brilliant ways of engaging young people in the Faith. Details can be found on the Walsingham website.
SUNDAY SCHOOL OR 10TO10 MEETS sUNDAYS AT 9:50 IN THE CHURCH HALL
2ND SUNDAY OF THE MONTH FAMILY MASS IN CHURCH
Children’s and Young People’s Ministry: St Peter’s Church Crabbs Cross
The children’s and Young People’s ministry exists to help those in our care know God and grow to become like His Son, Jesus Christ.
To accomplish our purpose we seek…
1. To instil in children’s minds the Word of God, so they will grow to think the way God thinks and live the way God has commanded.
2. To establish in children habits of godly living and a routine of daily prayer.
3. To create a Christian Community of children and adults who enjoy life together as a family and who are committed to Jesus Christ and to each other.
4. To help children follow a sacramental life.
5. To help children trust Christ as Saviour, and to live as Christian’s at home, at school, at play or wherever they are.
6. To make each child’s experience at church safe, fun and profitable in the process of growing to become everything God has planned.
Our Sunday School (known as 10 to 10 Club-start time 9:50am!) was revived about fourteen years ago and has run successfully, with varying numbers of children attending, since then. We have three teams of two teachers who work on a rota system through the year but not during the months of the school summer holiday period. The benefits of having a variety of individuals working with the children is that we all have something different to bring with a range of experience, talents and approaches. We are all CRB checked and have undergone training in safeguarding.
We accept children from the age of 0 upwards! We do ask that a parent stays with children under nursery age. Children between the ages of 0 and 13/14 come into the church hall by 10am when Sunday Mass begins in church. We begin with a service that reflects the Mass in church but at a level suitable for the children and that encourages their questions, discussions and comments. We discuss the Gospel of the day and look at how it can be applied to our lives. The activity that follows may be drama, music or art/craft focussed and will be differentiated to the ages of the children present. The materials used and content taught are discussed and approved by our parish priest Fr. Mike.
We join the church service either at the offertory or the peace. After the service drinks and biscuits are served in the hall and the children can play and chat together informally. In good weather they enjoy using the safe outside area.
Children who wish to can join the serving team from about the age of 6. They begin with the simplest, guided role of boat boy/girl and move on to other tasks as they feel ready. They can also read in church as soon as they feel comfortable and confident to do so. We would stress that they are not pressured to do any of these things but we will respond to any interest they show.
Children can also choose to be prepared for First Communion from about the age of 7. Parents, of course, are consulted and the Fr. Mike, will check each child’s readiness. The course lasts for 12 weeks and is taught in Sunday School time. The day of their First Communion is made very special. Usually families turn out in force, the candidates look lovely in their best clothes and we have a little party, with a celebratory cake, in the church hall after.