Here you can find selected material from issues of Trinity Memorial Church's monthly newsletter, the Trinity Times.
Affirming Our Advocacy for Children
The recent focus of the Christian Education Commission has been on adult formation via Forums and Trinity Lunchers; we also offer intergenerational activities for parish fellowship. Since our Trinity congregation does not consist of many children (ages 4-12),we do not have an active Sunday School. However, Trinity has provided opportunities for Christian Education through youth lectoring, acolytes, Canteen, and Sermon Time respite for families with young children.
We want to assure families that we value our youngest members of the congregation. Each child is a gift of God. The following directives are part of "A Children's Charter for the Church", developed over 15 years ago by the Episcopal leadership; Trinity makes a commitment to advocate for all children:
• "In the fulfillment of our Baptismal Covenant, we will include children as members and full participants in the Eucharistic community and in the church's common life of prayer, witness, and service." At Trinity, we welcome all children to the Eucharistic Table.
• "We will strive to love, shelter, protect, and defend children within our own communities and in the world, especially those who are abused, neglected, or in danger." We support the children of our Canteen with storytime, books, coloring activities, and friendly interactions. Trinity supports the Episcopal, "Safe Church Program" that certifies and educates adults who interact with children so to provide a safe haven.
• "We will advocate for the integrity of childhood and the dignity of all children at every level of our religious, civic, and political structures." Many of our Sunday Forums and Monday Lunchers focus on supporting families and youth-at-risk with specific programs provided by knowledgeable professionals and topical experts.
• "We will receive children's special gifts as signs of the Reign of God." As a parish, Trinity has historically provided opportunities for our youth to express their gifts and talents.
• "We will foster community beyond the family unit, in which children and adults know each other by name, minister to each other, and are partners together in serving Christ in the world." At Trinity, we love our children! We attempt to address them by name and meaningfully interact with them.
• "We will continue to appreciate children's abilities and readiness to represent Christ in His church, to bear witness to Him wherever they may be, and according to gifts given to them, to carry Christ's work of reconciliation in the world, and to take their place in the life, worship, and governance of children." The support and fellowship that we at Trinity show one another, the willingness to participate in outreach activities, the faith and spirituality shown by members of the congregation – these behaviors are exemplary models of living out the Christian commandment to 'love one another as He loves us".
Father Glenn may be offering Christian Formation at an inter-generational level to interested parishioners between the 2 Sunday services. Trinity has several youth and adults who are interested in being confirmed and attending confirmation classes.
Members of the CEC are available during sermon time to provide biblical stories and Christian Educational activities that are developmentally appropriate for the child. What is critically important is that our parish community develop relationships with our youth. Greeting them by name, volunteering to assist during sermon time, and making an effort to welcome them – these are things that will make a difference and encourage our youngest members to return to Trinity and to consider themselves part of our parish family!
Connie Alexander, Christian Education Commission