Children are very welcome and are an important part of our worshipping community. They have every right to be in church and participate in all worship in whatever way they are able to. We also know, however, that it is sometimes not easy as parents to occupy or engage children for a whole service. We have lots of resources available for children and families to access if and when they need to. We also have a couple of services a month that are particularly designed with children in mind.
Children in church
Every week there are members of our Children’s Team who are based in the Children’s Area before the start of the service. They will be able to tell you what is available for children during each particular service. The Children’s Area is in front of the organ with an aisle in front, allowing children to see what is going on. There is a selection of toys and books and a low table with child-size chairs for drawing and other activities. It also has adult-sized seats.
Creche is available for children aged 0-4ish every week from before the service (9:50ish) until just before the communion. We start off before the service with quiet play in the Children’s Area at the back of church and then move into the refectory (church hall) for more boisterous play during the first hymn.
We normally meet on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month during term-time. We play games, listen to stories, do crafts and talk about where God is in our lives at the moment. We return during the Offertory hymn so that we can all worship together for the second half of the service.
If there is no Sunday School running and you have children aged 4+ with you, please speak to a member of the Children’s Team who will be able to direct you towards resources for your child to use.
Children in church
Children are welcome at all our services. On the first Sunday of the month All Together is for people of all ages and the children stay in the main service throughout. On the other Sundays children are welcome to join our Junior Church meeting, with older children welcome to act as helpers or to remain in the main service if they prefer.
Our Junior Church group meets every Sunday of the year to celebrate Christian worship. We love games, stories, drama, craft, music, and even Lego and Origami. This all-age group meets during the Sunday 10am service, leaving during the first hymn. We join the congregation for communion and then share what we have been doing and praying about. We also regularly join the main congregation for prayers, drama and singing during the service.
All Together@St John’s
Children, young people and families are active leaders in the monthly All Together@St John’s service, often leading prayers, storytelling and craft activities as well as acting out dramas.
Each year, at Christmas time, we present a Nativity production full of music, drama and dance, with lots of dressing up.
There is a children’s area in the church with a selection of books and toys. Children are encouraged to take part in the service, often taking the collection or acting as welcomers.
In our All Together service at 10am on the first Sunday of the month people of all ages join in worship and different activities. Children share in the whole service with some songs especially suitable for young people. The craft and other interactive activities are suited to young children and old and are a great way for different generations to be involved together. They will be fun as well as exploring the theme of the day. The children often lead on a Bible story and the prayers. When we share Communion we use one of the children friendly additional Eucharistic Prayers.