Between our new minister’s visit in late April, wrapping up the classes for the end of the year in May, putting together a fun and exciting summer Religious Education program, and finding folks to take the helm with our children’s program in the next year, I’ve had precious little time to document everything that’s been going on recently. But rest assured, lots has been going on!
Finishing up the year was a great time and the teachers celebrated the past 9 months with a breakfast in their snazzy new custom chalice shirts, which the children decorated. Look at this bunch and just try to tell me you don’t want to be a part of this team!
The summer program has gotten off to a great start, with about a dozen of our children walking to Twin Ponds park and making a chain of Great Story beads in which 20 beads tell a story that begins with the birth of the universe and ends with their own births.
A pastoral scene from the children’s walk to Twin Ponds
Showing off their Great Story Beads!
We also have lots of groups spending time with the kids for a potpourri of fun activities over the next couple months. From Reader’s Theater to our high school youth group to the Women’s Circle, the kids will be spending several Sundays over the summer with people in the church who want to share their interests and talents with them — check the calendar for information about each week’s activity.
And if you haven’t heard, we’ve recently said farewell to our interim minister, Heather Lynn Hanson, who has helped guide Shoreline UU Church through the transitional period leading up to finding our new minister, Rev. Kate Landis, who will be arriving in early August. It’s an exciting time in the church right now, and it reminds me of this upbeat Beatles-esque tune entitled “A New Day“. Hope you enjoy it and that your summer is off to a great start!
For five Sundays in March and April, 22 members of our church both young old and in between participated in the Church Pals program, a beloved institution at Shoreline UU Church. Participants were paired up without knowing who their pal was and, over the five weeks, gave each other clues and small presents in order to get to know each other better and try to figure out each other’s identity. It’s a great and fun way for members of our community to get to know someone they might not meet otherwise.
The Church Pals program just ended this past weekend with a fun potluck. At the start, everyone found their pal by searching the church for the person that had the same assigned canned good that they did. The rest of the day was nothing but a party; food, conversation, games, and thanking each other for the nice things that were exchanged over the course of the month!
Below is a picture of this year’s Chuch Pals participants.
The nursery class and the Faithful Journeys class (6 to 9 years old) contributed to the potluck by making snacks in their class. The nursery class had great fun making “fruit porcupines” and the older kids baked Hungarian Kolackys, a special kind of cookie. Coincidentally, we had a visiting minister this past Sunday from Transylvania to whom we gave one of these treats in an effort to help him feel welcome.
In the gallery below, there’s some pictures of the kids in our new preschool class helping transport an orca strapped to the top of a truck, building a road for said truck, and lighting the chalice at the art table. From September through November of last year, we rarely had any children under age 6 and the nursery was usually empty — as luck would have it, however, several new families with young children came and have reinvigorated the nursery room!
Our interim minister, Heather Lynn Hanson, visited the Faithful Journeys (6 to 9 year old) class as well as the Toolbox of Faith (10 to 13 year old) class. She told the older kids a story about a boy who learns to defend himself from a bully with Aikido and eventually becomes his friend. With the Faithful Journeys class, Heather Lynn talked about becoming and being a minister and showed the kids her stoles — they even got to try on their favorite one!
One of the activities that the Faithful Journeys class has been doing all year is adding footprints to their Faithful Journeys path, a road that symbolically shows the things that they have learned and faithful actions the children have done, both in and out of their Sunday classes. We recently ran out of footprints so the class made some more in the kitchen of the Chrysalis, an activity which everyone enjoyed doing. They even got a free foot washing out of the deal!
Finally, a very good time was had by all 20+ folks at the Friday Family Potluck this past month — since it fell on a Friday the 13th, we hosted a brief game show (sans cameras, unfortunately) entitled “Superstition,” in which contestants attempted to identify which of three superstitions were real and which were fabricated. In true UU fashion, teams needed extra time to vote on their table’s answer. The night ended with a discussion on what difference, if any, people think there are between superstitious beliefs and religious beliefs. Our next potluck is 6:00pm – 8:30 pm on Friday, February 10th — check out the calendar for details. Hope you can attend!
A thank you letter from the Center for Human Services, who received 193 books from the 6 to 9 year old class’ book drive.
Books are fun to read
But some kids are in need
Bookerflies are here to help
To put the books upon the shelf
Bring your books for all ages
So we can share our favorite pages
The Faithful Journeys class tells the congregation about their new club
The Faithful Journeys class (5-9 years old) created their own club recently: The Bookerflies! Their club will help collect quality children’s books to be given to families that can’t afford presents this year. Their book collection box will be in the hallway for the next two Sundays, December 11 and 18. Please bring any children’s books you can donate to church by December 18th — after this date, the books collected will be going to Center for Human Services (a great organization that, incidentally, was a recent recipient of our church’s monthly social justice plate share) to be distributed to children and families who need them most. Thank you for helping these children along in their faithful journey!
Perhaps you come to Shoreline Unitarian all the time but don’t really know what goes on in the Chrysalis (the kid’s building). Or perhaps you have never come and are wondering what our children’s program is like. Below are some pictures of what’s been going on for the younger folks at SUUC over the last month.
On the day before Halloween, children gathered together to think of different reasons people wear masks and to make their own masks. They then crept into the sanctuary to see who they could surprise during the closing song!
In the 10-13 year old Toolbox of Faith class, the kids heard a funny story about a town where the people were too rigid in their way of thinking and talked about ways they’ve had to be flexible and change their minds as they’ve grown. Afterwards, they explored the theme flexibility by making wallets from a very versatile and unexpected material — duct tape!
The youth group’s annual pie sale found them at the helm of making FORTY SEVEN PIES! It was a big task but with the help of loud music and a giant pack of licorice they completed the job and raised over $300 from the baking extravaganza!
And closing out two months of holidays that often have a big focus on food (and candy), two members of the congregation talked with the kids about a healthy diet, what the labels on food products mean, and the idea of moderation and balance. The adults and kids made french toast together while talking about all the ingredients that went into it, then had a fun breakfast to end the day.
Stay tuned in the next couple of days for more info on THE BOOKERFLIES, the club formed by the Faithful Journeys (5-9 year old) class that’s working to get children’s books to families that can’t afford presents this holiday season!
Shoreline Unitarian Universalist Church busts into the 21st century with this, our first blog! This blog is dedicated to congregational events for families, what’s currently happening in our Religious Education program, and other information that pertains to families with children.
While you are here, please check out our calendar of upcoming family events at SUUC. In addition to the monthly potlucks and Food Lifeline service visits, there will be information about special services, special children’s programs, and so on — why not bookmark it?
Also, if you or your kids didn’t hear about Camp Quest NorthWest from Eliza Sutton last week, click below to find out more about it. Thanks for reading and stay tuned, I’ll be updating this blog every couple of weeks.