I have been so pleased with the children’s Sunday school curriculum and program. In fact, a few years ago Aiden would be so disappointed if we didn’t make it to Sunday school for some reason. Aiden loves the opportunities to create and learn in a safe space. As a mom, I love that the curriculum teaches children how to be still and quiet enough that they are able to take in lessons about both the Bible and our church year.
I’ve had the privilege of volunteering in a few of the children’s classes and would like to share a couple of memorable times to me. Last spring the children were learning about creation and how we care for the beautiful home God has given us. One of the final lessons of the unit involved actively caring for creation – little did we know we would be ‘getting our hands dirty’ that morning. Someone had brought in a peace lily that had overgrown its pot. Each of the children were given a pot to decorate and soil. As a group we split the lily – enough for 1 per child plus additional pots to leave in the room. The children so carefully and gently patted their soil down and even insisted on a scoop of “worm poop” to give their flower an extra boost of nutrients. And, they helped clean up the bit of a mess that we made. Those extra lilies are still sitting on the windowsill in the Atrium as a reminder to care for creation. Often when they come in the children will tend to the plants by watering them.
One morning I was assisting in the middle Atrium with our younger elementary school kids. Those planning for the summer had realized the children needed some general Bible basics – how it is set up, how you find scripture, what some of those long names mean. We were talking about the Old Testament and how to remember all those books. Somehow I was able to reach deep into my brain and pull out an “Old Testament Books of the Bible” song I learned as a little girl. Now, if you know me at all I do love to sing, but save nearly all of my jamming for my morning commute. So, I found myself ‘on stage’ in front of a captive audience singing a solo for the children that no one else in the room seemed to know. And, they loved it. By the end of the class we all had learned a bit of the tune. I found myself surprised to be able to contribute in that way and energized to be able to share more with the kids. I also found myself pulling up other memories from my early church years. What other nuggets of days gone by could I bring?
I have found myself in awe at the wondrous, inquisitive spirits our children share in the Atrium setting. They are thirsty for knowledge and even the smallest nugget seems so important to them. They pepper me with questions and commentary on our drive home, and even help me to continue to think deeply about the day’s teachings. To have my children come home and share what they have learned and the valuable relationships they are building with those volunteering means the world to me. Our extended family on both sides live out of state and I find it so important for my children to build relationships and consider as examples our other extended family – you all, our community of faith. I have cherished the opportunity to spend time with and learn from the other children and volunteers. I am eager to see what I learn next time I work with the Atrium, and which unexpected nuggets I can share with the children.
Stephanie Moore is mommy to 3 amazing children (Aiden, Isabelle, and Xander) and partner to Brandon. They’ve been attending Central for about 4 years.
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