Many of you may know that we have a Children’s Program, and may enjoy seeing the children as they go up onto the stage each Sunday, but have little idea of what the children are actually doing between the time that they receive their blessing from the congregation and the time that they return to join us in the Prayer for Protection and our closing song! On a recent Sunday, I spoke to the congregation to tell them a little bit about what our Children’s Program actually consists of, and for those of you who weren’t there, I’d like to recap those points as well as have this be the beginning of a recurring part of the newsletter to create a window into our Children’s Program.
We currently have eight warm, wonderful, and dedicated adult team-members and a group of delightful children who vary in age from two to ten on a typical Sunday. We use materials created by Unity Worldwide, so the children have the advantage of learning our Unity principles from a very early age. We have two concurrent programs; What a Wonderful World for our three- to five-year-olds and Celebrating My God-Self for children aged six and up. These programs are presented in themes that are typically structured into four lessons. Some of the examples of our theme topics include: Oneness, Prayer, Caring, Peacemaking, Cooperation and Diversity. We also have special lessons related to holidays such as Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving.
Each Sunday, we gather upstairs in our two groups and have a prayer and gathering time where the children have an opportunity to share about their lives. The younger children are guided through some of their activities by “CoCo the Wonder Bear” and both groups have a time of guided meditation, a story related to the particular theme on which we’re focused, with related questions to encourage discussion, as well as singing and a craft or other activity. At the end of our session, we gather the children together to practice the Prayer for Protection and to have them show each other the crafts they’ve created, before we all rejoin the congregation. We also give the children a bi-monthly take-home sheet for families which outlines our activities and songs, and suggests follow-up activities at home.
Because the number of children attending has been increasing, we’re currently recruiting additional team members so we can better serve our children. If you‘re interested in enriching your life and the lives of our children, please email the office at info@UnityVictoria.ca.
Patty Nasmith, Team Leader