Well here it is, September already! School has started and all of our students and parents are back in the swing of all the demands of academic and extra-curricular life. It’s no different here at the church. We’re back in the swing, too! We kicked-off our Youth year with a Friday Late Night Lock-Out that had us running fourteen of our students all over town until the wee hours of the morning. It was a blast! Sunday we took a group of high schoolers to visit their SFPC friends at OSU and introduce them all to First Presbyterian Church Stillwater….and Eskimo Joe’s.
And when I say “we,” I mean myself and SFPC’s new Youth Intern, Jenna Linholm. I am thrilled to have her on board, because she brings enthusiasm and experience to our middle school program. She is gifted with this age group and plans to be a consistent presence for Sunday school, Youth Group, and Wednesday night dinners. She served the congregation at First Presbyterian Church Stillwater in this very same capacity while she was a student at Oklahoma State. Now that she has graduated and moved back to Edmond, she is excited to be involved with our students in our congregation. We are blessed to have her.
With Jenna’s help, our middle schoolers are getting their very own classroom, curriculum, and event programming this year. Sunday school will be so great that they won’t want to miss it. If you are the parents of a middle schooler, join us in telling them just how awesome and important Sunday school is, and make attendance a priority. They will be using a great curriculum from Sparkhouse called Ancestors that teaches about all the major characters in the Bible. It’s made for middle schoolers and lays a great foundation for Confirmation and for high school Christian education.
Finally, we are changing our Youth Group time! We have noticed that we have higher attendance when we schedule our activities right after 11:00 worship.
We also recognize that it’s a much more visitor-friendly approach to invite students to stay for lunch and fun than it is to ask them to come back later. Each week we will have lunch at noon all together and then have activities until around 3:00. Sometimes our activities will be for combined MS and HS groups and sometimes we will split them up; mostly we will stay on campus but often we will take “field trips” to get church happening outside of this building. It’s going to be a fantastic year for our Youth! – Laurel