Families & Youth

Families & Youth

Family Ministries Events

2019 Crop Walk October 20, 2019 @ 1:00 PM
Time to Sign up! Or, Support a Walker!

This year’s walk begins at Trinity UMC on Sumner Ave., Springfield (registration 1:00 PM, walk begins at 2:00 PM), and we will walk along Sumner Ave. and part of Forest Park.  Proceeds from the Walk help to fight hunger and food insecurity worldwide, and a portion goes locally to three organizations–Open Pantry, The Food Bank of Western MA, and Lorraine’s Soup Kitchen.

We encourage you to visit First Church’s CROP Walk page and sign up to walk or make a donation to support a walker: https://www.crophungerwalk.org/springfieldma/Team/View/112887/First-Church-in-Longmeadow-UCC

Last year Team First Church raised the second most money, and we won the Gold Sneaker! (The year before we came in first!) Let’s show Greater Springfield how to do it again this year.

Questions? Want to donate to a walker or sign up to walk? Please see Marilyn Paul-Lewis or email at marilyn@firstchurchlongmeadow.org.

Visiting with Young Children

We are so glad that you are thinking of joining us on a Sunday morning! Families are welcome and cherished at First Church.  Families with children are very welcome in our sanctuary. We begin every worship service as a multigenerational community, children from 1st grade to middle school take part in a children’s message and are then dismissed to Church School or Confirmation Class. We have a dedicated classroom for our pre-Kindergarten and Kingergarten age children.  Please ask a greeter or usher for directions for childcare.

We schedule several Communion Sundays a year where children in grades 1 and up remain in worship with their families to experience the sacrament.  Children are welcome to join in Communion at the discretion of their parents.

Visiting for the first time?  Please inform a greeter or usher that you are new and that you’d like to be introduced to our Lead Teacher or Family Ministries Director.…

Christian Education

Jesus said “Let the children come to me.”  At First Church, we extend this same welcome.  Our Christian Education program begins with our Nursery and Pre-K (ages 0-5 years) program and continues with Church School for grades K-2 and 3-5; Christian Education and Church Services for grades 6-7; and Confirmation classes for grades 8+.  Our children are invited to become members of First Church after completing Confirmation classes.  We also have youth programs for 8-12th grade students.

er Egg Decorating
More egg decorating!

Family Ministries

At First Church of Christ, we extend ministries and education to inspire children and families on their faith journey, treasuring our God who both supports them and calls them to action.  We offer programs for specific age groups as well as regular events for all ages with special focus on our youngest ones.

We also offer monthly inter-generational social opportunities for people of all ages to play, learn, and spend time together, with special design around our youngest members. Typical events include outings, dinner & movie nights,  Halloween double-feature & costume party, and carol sing with cookies and hot cocoa on the first Sunday of Advent.

Photos from some of our recent events: Trash Talk, Movie Night, Egg Decorating, Family Game Night, and Christmas Pageant:

Youth Programs

NEW Meeting Time:  Sundays @ 6:00 PM (unless otherwise stated)

To Youth Group Families: I am glad to be back and participating in youth group events again! I enjoyed the time I had off to be able to devote every second to my family! It is an amazing and beautiful time when a new family member comes into the world! I want to thank everyone who brought food to our house during the first month or so of Liliana’s life! It was more than helpful! Also a big thank you to the youth group who made Liliana a beautiful blanket! We are so lucky to be a part of this community, and I am blessed to work with the youth of this community!

~Christine Callahan

UPCOMING EVENTS (NOVEMBER-DECEMBER 2019)

  • Sunday, November 24th: no evening meeting.
  • Sunday, December 1st @ 11:30 AM-1:00 PM Help set up for the Christmas Fair (no evening meeting)
  • Saturday December 7th @ 10:30 AM-2:00 PM: Youth serve at the Christmas Fair lunch
  • Sunday December 8th @ 11:30 AM-1:00 PM: Youth help break down the Christmas Fair. (no evening meeting)
  • Sunday December 15th @ 6:00-7:30 PM: Youth Group Meeting: Gingerbread house making!
  • Sunday December 22 @ 11:15 AM-12:00 PM: Youth can come stand by their Gingerbread houses set up in Bailey Hall during coffee hour.

Confirmation (Grade 8+)

This meets 1-2 times per month after worship 11:15-12:15 pm (2nd & 4th Sundays of most months class will meet)

All youth are invited to a one-year Confirmation program to explore their faith with teachers Wanona Dobbs and the Pastors.  Who is God: Creator,  Jesus, the Holy Spirit? How can we read the Bible? How did Jesus teach us to live? What is the church? How did we get here and what do we believe?
 
We’ll explore our faith with monthly classes, a weekend retreat, visits to other faith communities and one-to-one time with an adult mentor from our church for each youth. There is a confirmation banquet in May for confirmands and their families and mentors, and Confirmation will take place with the whole church at the end of May 2020, a time for youth to affirm their baptismal vows and be confirmed in our church with the ancient laying on of hands.

If you would like to register your child, please fill out the registration form linked below (and read our First Church Safe Conduct Policies).  We look forward to serving your youth!

Ruth Perry Award

The Ruth Perry Award was established by First Church through donations from its members to honor Ruth Perry, who was music director from 1931 to 1971, for her contributions to the musical ministry of First Church.  The intent of the award is to recognize those graduating high school seniors who have participated significantly in the musical life of the church.

Each year the Music Committee may vote to award one or more awards from the interest accrued in the Ruth Perry Scholarship Fund.  The recipient(s) and the amount(s) of the individual award(s) will be determined by a majority vote of members of the Music Committee, the Minister and Director of Music.  It will be the prerogative of the Music Committee to abstain from awarding any grant in any given year.

Beginning May 1 each year, the application is open to high school seniors. The award(s) will be given on a Sunday in June.

Qualifications

The Recipient must:

  1. be a member of First Church.
  2. be a graduating high school senior who is pursuing post high school studies.
  3. have been an active participant in the musical life of First Church. Examples of active participation are:
    • Membership in church musical organizations
    • Instrumental performance at church services
    • Musical participation at other church activities
    • Assistance to the Director of Music; assistance at church-related musical functions; cataloging of music; other assistance at the discretion of the Director of Music.