Since about February 2016, when we welcomed our new minister, Rev. Geoff McKee, our Sunday services have been at 10:00 am.
The Good News Club (“Sunday School”) meets from about 10:20 am until about 11:00 am.
The children go into the church for the first 20 minutes and they join in the worship along with the congregation for that period.
As part of this, they will sing a couple of hymns and another couple of specifically child-orientated songs.
We are very lucky that some of our young folk – “The Prospects” (pictured in this post) – have a praise band, which often provides the music and lead singer for child-directed part of the worship.
There is also a children’s talk by Geoff McKee, which is usually on the same general topic as the adults will have as the theme for the sermon (which is itself at a later stage in the service, after the children have gone out to Good News Club).
Geoff invites the children to come forward to the front of the Church for the children’s talk. At certain times of the year, the children will have an active part to play in the service at this point: e.g. lighting the Advent candles during the 4 Sundays in the lead-up to Christmas.
We are lucky to have a large church hall, which is part of the same building as the Church.
We call that hall the Fellowship Hall and that is where we go for Good News Club.
On an average Sunday, these days, we will have up to 5 children of varying ages (0 – 15), which makes it difficult to plan ahead to some extent.
We make use of teaching materials which are very flexible indeed.
The Scripture Union “Light” series of resources has the beauty of being divided into different age groups and it is also teachable successfully whether you have fully prepared ahead of time or whether you are reading the information for the first time at the point when trying to take control of the lesson (!).
We will always have at least 2 adults with the children and all of them have been fully checked for child protection purposes.
The adults who are involved with the Good News Club are: Robert Bell; Peter Brash; Lorraine Hall; Joanne Hobson; Susan McSheffrey; Tracey Rae; Jean Symon.
We are keen to provide teaching in the Christian faith as much as possible. The Scripture Union materials are good at explaining things in a way which is as helpful to adults as to children.
Children are crucially important in the Church.
This is true from a practical perspective (they are the future Church) as well as from a Biblical standpoint – e.g. the story of Jesus and the Little Children (links to Geoff’s sermon on that subject).
Like many churches in Scotland these days, we are seeing a decline in the number of young people attending. We’re hoping to reverse that trend and we have been tapping into some of the available resources on that subject. In April 2016, we were represented at the Community of Faith Conference in Inverness and this article on our website – Rethinking Sunday School – came from that experience.
The “Now You’re Talking” Facebook Group also shares ideas and resources.
Our main purpose on a Sunday is to look after your children while you are in the morning service.
This enables you to get the maximum spiritual refreshment from your time in Church.
After the service, you can come through to the Hall to collect your child / children. At that time, tea and coffee are served in the Hall and so it’s a good opportunity to meet up with others in the Church and have a blether.