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We're an intergenerational church that welcomes children as full participants in our community, with lots to teach us about the life of faith. All children are welcome in the service with their families; we don't mind noise and wiggles! Read this letter from our rector to learn more about why we include children in the service. We provide materials for quiet play, spiritual formation, and creativity which children are welcome to use during the service. In addition, Incarnation offers the following:
NURSERY & NURSERY NOOK
We offer nursery care for children 0-3 from 10am until just before communion. We also offer an area for children under 3 and their caregivers in the sanctuary called the nursery nook. The nook is a safe and welcoming space for the youngest children to experience the rhythms of the church while quietly playing during the service.
ATRIUM (OCTOBER 1 - PENTECOST)
The atrium is a place of worship and prayer set aside for children in our worship space. Atrium opens before church at 9:30am for children ages 3-12 to participate in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. Ages 3-6 are invited to the Good Shepherd Atrium, and ages 7-12 to the True Vine Atrium.
Once church begins, children may continue working in the atrium or return to sit with their families. We encourage families to teach their children to whisper during the service; this helps communicate from an early age that something special is happening when we gather for worship!
Note: The Atrium year begins October 1, ends at Pentecost (usually early June), and takes a break over the summer. We offer Wild Wonder from 9:30-10am every Sunday over the summer.
WILD WONDER (SUMMER)
On Sundays during the summer, children of all ages gather for Wild Wonder at 9:30am before the service. Wild Wonder is led by different people in the congregation who share their many gifts with the children (including music, wilderness survival, dog obedience, tango, snake husbandry, and gardening to name a few). The children pray, sing, hear scripture, and explore God's wild world together before bringing their discoveries into church and worshiping with their families.
YOUTH VOLUNTEERS / YOUTH GROUP
Children of all ages are invited to participate in the service and help in various ways. Older children (7+) may serve as Acolytes (carrying the gospel book, lighting altar candles), Crucifers (carrying the cross), Readers, Communion Servers, and more. Teenagers may volunteer to help with the liturgy, A/V, and the Atrium as desired.
We hold monthly lunches after church on the 3rd Sunday of each month for our middle- and high-school youth. These lunches offer opportunities for friendship, mentoring, and prayer. And some of our youth participate in Apex, the youth group of Restoration Anglican (our planting congregation).
Children and youth help lead the worship service on special occasions such as Christ the King and Pentecost. These services give the kids an opportunity to practice the rhythms of the liturgy and the adults an opportunity to learn from our children. Many in our congregation say these are their favorite Sundays!
PROTECTING OUR CHILDREN
We are committed to the safety and protection of our youngest members. All nursery, atrium, and youth volunteers have cleared a thorough background check and have been trained in child-safety practices, and we follow the child-protection policies of the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic.
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