Dear St. Lukers,
In the midst of moving offices this week I found a box full of old pictures from St. Luke’s Children’s Ministry. I believe the oldest dated back 22 years!
In them, I saw the Fellowship Hall (now the Youth Center) covered with giraffes and elephants from VBS. I smiled looking at Pentecost symbols upstairs in Building A. I even had to ask where on campus a couple of pictures were taken because all I saw was grass. I was informed that this was where our CDC playground and Founder’s Hall now sit.
I saw faces I recognized, and many I did not. Seasons come and go. Old spaces become new, and the story of what God is doing with St. Luke’s Children’s Ministry continues. Which is why The Treehouse is so exciting. What once was a worship space, then a youth space, then an adult space, is now a creative kids space for our 1st – 5th graders.
Over a year ago, we started dreaming about what our kids and families needed. I was asked to dream about the next 5-10 years and imagine a place where my own kids would belong. I started to imagine a space where kids felt excited to come back to – a place where all are welcome to grow, serve, and share their story. A space where leaders are passionate about growing alongside kids and becoming a trusted person in their families’ lives. A place of fun, faith, and friends where kids know they are seen, valued, and known among their church family. It took hours and hours, a group of dedicated volunteers, and a vision board to bring what was once The Attic in Building C to a new reality.
Since the opening on August 14, over 100 kids have climbed up the steps to The Treehouse! It’s been all God to see people’s excitement and involvement. We have 15 volunteers each Sunday working to disciple kids, and there’s always room for more. We are seeing youth step up as Large Group coordinators and small group leaders. Kids ready to lead in song and worship no matter the age. Above all else, kids and leaders are deepening their faith and growing as disciples of Jesus.
If you haven’t been up there to see it for yourself yet, here is quick glimpse of what St. Luke’s Kids are experiencing:
Each Sunday (except for All-In Sundays), our elementary-age kids are greeted by their Small Group leaders where they get introduced to WHAT: What we are learning today? Then they move to Large Group in The Treehouse where we ask the question: SO WHAT? Why does this matter to God? Here the kids are faced with a question that is discussed using the same Scripture as is being used in worship. There is time for reflection, response, and a song of praise. Finally, the kids return to their Small Group for: NOW WHAT? What does God want us to do about it? Kids are given space for discussion, application, and prayer. A lot is covered in just an hour, and the kids usually ask to stay longer!
It’s amazing to see this old space take on a new life, and our dream is to continue providing a fun and accepting place for as many kids as will fit – and that’s a LOT! So, invite a friend and come be a part of what God is doing in the life of St. Luke’s Kids. The Treehouse is open on Sundays from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. (doors open at 9:15 a.m.), and we hope to open soon for Wednesday Night mid-week discipleship.
We also want to invite you all to our free Fall Family Fun Night on Wednesday, October 19 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. in the parking lot behind the Child Development Center and Youth Center! There will be food, pumpkin painting, live music, family games, gaga ball for the youth, open playground, and of course – candy. Click here to RSVP, and we’ll see you there!
I look around and stand amazed at all that has happened since I arrived at St. Luke’s two years ago. It is so true – the Lord makes all things new!! No matter your age, come and be a part of the continuing story of Children’s Ministry here at St. Luke’s. There is a place for everyone!
Peace and Joy,
St. Luke’s Director of Children’s Ministry