Your unique personality is needed by someone who walks in the door or sits in a service (or on Zoom) and needs to see and hear someone who looks like them represented in the leadership of our services!!
For way too long, the chancel was reserved for only a select group of people. We can now reclaim that space and let others know that they, too, have full access to God’s church and ministry.
Our children need to get to know many members of their faith family (like those who sign up to teach Children’s Church!) to help them feel included and supported by a large extended group of people who teach them about God’s love for them and help them as they navigate this world.
Speaking of our young, we are extremely grateful that so many families are willing to help their children, youth, and young adults participate in worship in a way that is a huge blessing to the entire congregation.
The goal of including them is 3-fold:
1) to ensure that our young feel included in every aspect of the life of their church family, see their place at the table as equal to everyone else’s, and teach them what it means to be part of the work and ministry of a congregation. And our chancel? We want our young to know they belong there, too.
As our youth and young adults move away from us and into their adult lives, we hope this connection with a faith family will serve them well and help them find another wherever they land later in their lives.
2) to minister to all of us in a special way—hearing the voices of our young reading of God’s love, challenging ourselves to live justly, and calling out to God for forgiveness reminds us that we approach God as God’s children and that the same affection we have when hearing young voices read is the same affection God has for us. It is deeply touching and meaningful and adds to our worship significantly.
3) to let young people and their families who visit see clearly how much Faith values and respects our young. I get weekly contacts from families looking for a church that will welcome and be a healthy place for their young to know what it means to be connected with a church and with God.
When I tell them our children, youth, and young adults serve as readers you can hear the relief in their voice that we don’t just talk about caring for our youngest, we try to practice it. When little ones come in and see others who look like them, and the youth and young adults they admire and want to be like, standing on the chancel and modeling serving God and the church, it lets them feel more connected to worship and know that they belong up there, too.
We know this commitment is not an easy one given all the activities kids are engaged in and we hope it continues to feel like a blessing to you and your family rather than a chore! With advance planning we hope to help make it easier to coordinate service in worship with your family calendars and welcome any support you may provide.
We need: (note—those on Zoom may serve as readers!)
—children, youth, and young adults to serve as Acolytes and Readers (they can be both on the same Sunday if they wish)
— adults to serve as readers
—adults (18 years and older) to serve as nursery workers
—youth under 18 years old to serve as nursery helpers with the adult nursery workers
—Sanctuary and Chancel Volunteers (providing flowers for special occasions, filling candles with oil, preparing the candles for the Joys and Concerns, straightening up before and after worship, providing Communion the first Sunday of the month) THIS CATEGORY WILL BE ADDED TO THE LISTS SOON
—Teachers for Children’s Church (all materials provided a week ahead of time)
Volunteering is an easy way to get to know members of the congregation as you engage with them and let them see your face and learn your name and to simply keep in touch during this time when many still feel the need to avoid crowds.
Will Gossett recently served as the young adult reader by Zoom from college. Our young ones living elsewhere need to know we love and miss but are proud of them and that we still consider them part of our family!! So please ask your young adults who live elsewhere to also consider signing up.
Please consider signing up to support our worship experience by completing the on-line Signup Genius (check your email for links or click here), signing up on the bulletin board in the narthex, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Peace, Pastor Carla