The Christian Development Committee oversees the Christian education programs in the congregation apart from the Men’s Club and the U.C.W. The focus over this past year has been around the youth.
In Sunday School children listen to stories from the Judeo-Christian faith; they talk about the stories and experience them through drama; crafts; storytelling; video presentations and even cooking and eating (a preferred activity of many).
Through these activities and accompanying discussion, children and teens learn about values and morals implied in the stories however our ultimate goal is for children to know this is a safe place where they are valued for who they are and cherished as children of our Creator.
On Sundays the children participate in worship for about 15 minutes and then attend a program specially designed for their age level.
Sunday School Year – Journey of Faith
From January 2014 to end of the school year, we completed our Journey of Faith program in the Sunday school where we metaphorically travelled around the world to learn about other cultures. This included members from our congregation from different backgrounds lending their time and presenting a rich diverseness to the Sunday school attendees (kids and adults alike). The children collected Frequent Flyer Points during the year that they were able to spend at the end of the year in a special market of toys and candy.
This past fall we started using a new curriculum from One Room Sunday School. This curriculum combines videos with various activities and games to learn the stories of the Bible. Overall the new curriculum has been well received.
Over the Christmas Season there were various activities. Our third annual Parent’s Night Out event during Advent was hosted by Chris and Karl Tibelius and Joan and Earle Smith, and a dozen children participated. Families took turns selling Christmas tags for the Sunday School’s Advent fundraiser to purchase art supplies for Iqaluit and $400 was raised through donations from the congregation. Christine Johnson organized an intergenerational Christmas pageant for the 4:30pm Christmas Eve Service with several Sunday school teachers and children participating.
This past year we also said thank you and bye to several longtime volunteer Sunday school teachers: Cairine Thomas, Dawn Pennington, and Cynthia Fortura. Many thanks to them for their years of enthusiastic service to the Sunday school. We continue to have the time and support from Chris Tibelius with her Sunday school coordination efforts, and Jennifer Landry, Steven Bergman, Kelley Powell, Victoria Fawcett and Katherine Fouzie teaching. Of course we continue to look for additional parent volunteers to help out on Sundays.
The Sunday school attendance continues its downward trend of the last several years, with about two dozen children registered ranging from ages 3 to 11. We have weekly attendance generally in the range of 8 to 12 children.
Our older Youth Group program continues to be led by Owen Clifton. He has engaged the youth through various activities across the year. As seen with other trends, the Youth Group fluctuates between 2 to 4 youth participants.
CVUC participated in Camp Awesome again this past year in July. Camp Awesome is a week-long Christian day camp program sponsored by Ottawa Presbytery of the United Church of Canada. It was another successful Camp in 2014. There were 35 children that attended. The theme for the camp was Bible Surprises, and following this theme the stories the kids looked at were: Noah’s Ark, Jonah and the Whale, the Nativity, Jesus Calms the Storm and Jesus heals the Little Girl and Woman. The group had a spectacular water day and summed up the week with the show for the families. Special thanks to Jennifer Landry for her coordination of this very impactful event.
The nursery continues to see little visitors each week. Thank you to the many volunteers who spend their time in the nursery to watch them. We continue to see on average 3 visitors each week.
And of course we said good-bye to Neil, and hello to Trisha and Christine this past year. Both Trisha and Christine have stopped by the Sunday school and engaged in spirited conversation with the kids.
In closing, during this ongoing transition time the continued challenge is encouraging and attracting youth and young families. At CVUC we are blessed with the volunteer time that we have for the various activities; but we must be mindful of the anticipated transitional changes ahead. I look forward as we travel the path that God has set out together.
Respectively submitted, Steven Bergman
Christian Development Committee
Our Christian Development committee includes:
|Sunday School Coordinator||Chris Tibelius|
|Nursery Co-Coordinator||Eleanor Henderson|