Stay up to date on the Church School Schedule for all programs and ages.
Church School Schedule
How Do Typical Sundays Work?
Church School at All Souls is scheduled concurrently with Sunday Worship Services (10:00 am). While parents of infants and children younger than four years old may drop those children off in the Nursery before the worship service begins, Church School students go to the Meetinghouse with their parents for the first part of the service. On most Sundays during the Church School year children gather at the front of the Meetinghouse for a children's story after which they are dismissed to EPIC Adventures. Parents are welcomed and encouraged to help younger students find their way during this process, which can at times resemble the historic Exodus. Those parents simply filter back into the ongoing worship service when they are able to do so.
When the children are dismissed, students in 4th/5th grades, Middle School and High School go directly to their classrooms while the others go to EPIC in Room C
Church School class activities continue until church is over. For the safety of all the children during this transition time, the children will remain in Room C to await a parent. Parents are reminded that it is important to pick up your children immediately after the worship service is finished before joining in fellowship activities.
Church Family Sundays
Several times during each Church School year the regular EPIC Adventures programming is not held so that children may join their parents for regular worship services (and so that adults may worship together, free of teaching responsibilities on those days.) The Children’s table in the back of the Meetinghouse will be supplied with extra, quiet activity materials. Pew pals (stuffed animals), story books, coloring and activity sheets, and crayons will be available for children to borrow during the service. Young children who may not have developed the patience to sit through an entire church service are welcome to leave the worship service at a certain point (listed in the worship bulletin) in order to participate in a special quiet story time, usually held in Room A. Parents are encouraged to escort young children to the story time area and return to the worship service.
Summer Sunday Fellowship Program
Our own church school year will come to a close, ending with a wonderful Youth Sunday Service toward the end of May. But the ministry of our church does not end in the summer months. All summer (and also any Sundays during the school year that do not have structured classes), the Children’s table in the back of the Meetinghouse will be supplied with extra, quiet activity materials. Pew pals (stuffed animals), story books, coloring and activity sheets, and crayons will be available for children to borrow during the service. These are quiet type activities that children can borrow to use during the worship time.
We also offer a Summer Activity Program entitled Summer Sunday Fellowship. Each Sunday through the summer months, children who prefer not to remain in church will be dismissed at the usual time from the Meetinghouse to gather in Room A. Children in preschool and Kindergarten will have age-appropriate activities in the Nursery. Older children will enjoy supervised activities in the Vestry. These activities may include crafts, puzzles, and movies, along with a quiet corner for reading. Unlike church school, the purpose of the Summer Activity Program is to accentuate time for Christian Fellowship. If you have any puzzles, Bible games, movies, books, stuffed animals, or other activities to suggest, please share your ideas with us. We are also looking for adult volunteers to help us monitor this relaxed fellowship program. The Summer Sunday Fellowship will begin at the end of May until September.
Late in September, we will be giving the kindergartners their first Bibles. It is a special time for the children and for us. This seems a very important time to acknowledge once again the great gift these children are to us all. There are critical times when publicly blessing these gifts of God is valuable for the child, the parent and the congregation. We believe that as our children begin his or her school career, we have arrived at another opportune moment.
3rd Grade Race Through the Bible
All Souls Congregational Church traditionally presents Bibles to third graders. Several years ago we established a new practice, where children and parents learned together about this great book before receiving the gift from the church. Mrs. Garrett and Mrs. Sprague host a series of workshops we call “Race through the Bible”. These workshops will help students get to know their new Bible, how to use their Bible, and have a better understanding of what is in the Bible. Parents (or guardians) are included because they are the primary faith educator for their child. Faith education is a family practice, and we want this to be part of that parent-child effort.
These workshops are held before church, from 8:45 to 9:45am, during the month of October. The Sunday after the last workshop students are presented with their new Bibles in our worship service. This reaffirms to the student, parent and congregation that we recognize that this is an important step in each student's faith journey.
Early in June, we recognize our graduating high school seniors. It is a special time for the young adults and for us. At this pivotal moment we ask the parents to give a blessing to their son or daughter. We reflect on the time shared in the nurturing of this young person. Through the blessing parents and congregation alike launch the seniors into the future God intends for them. There is a deep sense of continuity between Baptism, the Kindergarten Blessing, Confirmation and the Senior Blessing. At this final milestone in growing up here at All Souls, the Senior Blessing is a moment of prayer and gratitude in recognition of our dedication as a congregation to honor the commitment to “take these children under our care” even as the parents give their prayerful blessing to their offspring.