He took a little child and had him stand among them. Taking him in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one of these children in my name welcomes me and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.” Mark 9:36-37
At St. James, we try our best to support the faith development of all members, especially our children, who we hold in a very special place in our church. Once baptized, they are considered full members of the church. We hope to involve them in every possible aspect of our community.
Central to our life together is our worship on Sundays. On regular Sunday mornings, most children spend the first part of the service in the parish hall and come over after the Lord’s Prayer. When in church, children are invited to gather around the altar for the Eucharistic Prayer. Once baptized, we invite all children to come to the altar and receive Holy Communion. We encourage them to participate as fully as possible, from serving as acolytes, ushers, and oblationers to simply sitting in the pews and reading the prayers and worshiping in their own special way with great enthusiasm.
We believe that Christian formation is a lifelong process. The foundation is laid beginning with Sunday School. The St. James Church School gathers on Sunday at 9:30 AM. We have a dedicated group of teachers who love our young people ages 3 to 16. Our caring teachers use crafts, games, songs, and plays to bring the teachings of the Bible to life, and to develop a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. We expand on our understanding by going on pilgrimages to other churches and watching movies and shows that are faith related.
During the year, there are opportunities for fun and fellowship. The children regular assist with the coffee hour that the whole church participates in. Potluck suppers and events like our Maundy Thursday Agape Meal provide opportunities for us to gather as a parish family and children are always welcome and add to the sense of fellowship. Picnics and ice cream socials are always opportunities to share in food, fun, and fellowship for not only the children but also for all who are young at heart.