Progressive Christian Education for Children and Youth
As a progressive Christian congregation of the United Church of Christ, we strive to be diverse, inclusive, and dedicated to peace and justice. We celebrate all people as children of God, greeting our neighbors with open hearts and open minds. We seek to provide our children and youth with a meaningful, spiritual foundation that will guide them as they grow in their own lifelong faith journey. Our goal is to enlighten children and youth to the rich history and beauty of the Christian tradition and to instill values that will enable them to have a loving relationship with God, while encouraging them to act out their faith for the betterment of the world.
On Sunday mornings, we have a nursery staffed by loving,
caring adults from our church community. A comfy rocker provides a wonderful place to
soothe an infant; shelves are filled with books and age appropriate toys for younger toddlers.
Sunday School (Preschool to 8th Grade)
Young children and middle school youth gather in their classrooms at 10AM for a chapel service and weekly lesson. They leave Sunday School as a group entering the sanctuary for a special Children’s Time with Reverend Nicole, then recess to sit with their families for the remainder of the service which includes The Lord’s Prayer, a closing hymn, benediction and a farewell song, God Be With You.
In age appropriate ways, weekly lessons incorporate Bible stories, stories
fromother faith traditions,community service activities,exposure to local and
global social justice projects and building bridges with other world faith
traditions. We believe faith evolves throughout one’s life. It is our desire for
our children and youth to build a strong foundation of Progressive Christian
values that provides them comfort and stability in both good times and bad,
while encouraging a life time of wonder, questioning, searching and growth.
Fall Session (Sept to mid-Nov) Lessons focus on the stories of the Hebrew Bible and tales
from a variety of world faith traditions.
Winter & Spring Sessions (Jan to mid-June) Lessons focus on Jesus' life story, his parables and teachings, and his messages of peaceful solution making, love for all of God’s creation, and the comfort and hope we find as we share together in community.
Ages 0-3 ½: Staffed by adult volunteers, our expanded nursery includes a cool space tent, age appropriate toys, books and simple craft activities.
Ages 4+: Led by a pair of older teens from within our congregation, children and youth gather for a Sacred Time together followed by a values-based picture book and coordinating craft or activity.
School Year: Curricula/Classes
Hired teens from within in our community provide a warm loving place to share the day’s Bible Story. Finger-plays, songs, games and carefully chosen picture books enhance the day’s lesson.
Adult volunteers welcome children at 10am in their classrooms with a gathering craft activity that sets the stage for the days Bible Story. They share in a Sacred Time together incorporating community prayers, opening and closing rituals as well as a time to share joys and concerns in their lives. The Holy Moly Bible Story curriculum features a weekly bible story with video, followed by time for age appropriate, thoughtful questioning that encourages both wonder and discovery.
Grades 4th - 5th
Adult volunteers welcome youth at 10am in their classroom; lessons start with a gathering activity and Sacred Time; our curriculum is based in the scripture readings used during the 10am service which their adults are participating in at that time. This provides the opportunity for family discussion on that Sunday's themes.
Emerging youth are engaging in a peer-led small group model during Sunday School. Led by a trained high school-aged facilitator with an adult participant, a values focus and relevant theme is introduced each week and then explored through activities and discussion.
4th grade - Middle School Youth Group: Meets once a month on Sunday afternoons for community service projects and fun social events.
Senior High Youth Group: Meets once a month on Sunday mornings at the church for social events and service projects. A calendar with the days and times of meeting is available; if your youth is interested in participating in this program, please contact the church office so we can provide you with the information you need.
Safety at CUCC
Keeping children and youth safe at CUCC is taken very seriously. All volunteers sign off on our Safety Policy and all parents complete a Safety Registration/Photo Permission form each year.
Progressive Christian Education Director
Since joining as co-director in 2016, Heather Bowler has helped us to create a program that is rich in Christian stories and traditions, while staying true to the overall progressive view of the congregation. Now she is the full-time director of the program. Her experience, enthusiasm, and love of children is evident in the deeply spiritual, yet fun and engaging lessons she creates each week.