Children, Youth, and Families at First Congregational United Church of Christ

Youth Group

God is still speaking and so are our youth. At First Congregational Church we deeply value and treasure our youth. We believe it is our privilege to grow with them in faith, fun and Christian fellowship. Our youth ministry is offered to tweens and teens who are in 6th-12 grade.

We are an Open and Affirming space for everyone, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, or any other identifier. We believe in a fully open, loving, and affirming community and we are committed to the physical, emotional, and mental safety of everyone within our community. We are a small group of 6th-12th graders, which gives us the flexibility to create activities and programs that directly relate to your teen’s needs.

Our weekly Youth Group meets on Wednesday nights from 6pm-8pm at the church. Here we gather for dinner, sacred conversations about faith and social justice, and of course, fun! Check out our calendar of events below.

Children and Youth in Worship

Here at First Congregational Church, we are committed to becoming a truly intergenerational community, where children and adults worship, serve, learn, and celebrate side by side, all year long. Children and youth actively participate in our worship services and are welcomed at all congregational events. During worship, we have a special area at the front of the sanctuary where very young children and their parents may sit and have a front-row view of all the action!

FIRST SUNDAYS: All-Ages Worship with Communion for Everyone!

On the first Sunday of each month, we worship as one whole Body of Christ: all ages joined together in prayer, in song, and in beloved community! During the worship service, nursery care is available for infants and toddlers. (They are also most welcome to stay with you in worship, so please feel free to do what feels right for your family!) Please note that on the first Sunday of the month, there is no Sunday school; all children are encouraged to stay and worship with their families during our special all-ages worship service, which includes story, song, and communion for all!

ALL OTHER SUNDAYS: K-5 Sunday School (September – June)

On the second, third, fourth (and fifth) Sundays (September through June), children worship with the congregation for the first part of the service. At about 11:00 am, children in grades K-5 are invited up to the front with their teachers for a special blessing. Teachers then accompany children to the classroom. Each week, Sunday school includes an opening circle, prayer, song, and story, as well as a hands-on activity or project. Children are also always welcome to stay and worship with the congregation if they wish; please feel free to do what feels right for your family!

After worship, teachers will bring children to the front lobby. You can meet your child there, and then go downstairs to coffee hour together!

Coming Soon: Our Whole Lives

What is Our Whole Lives (OWL)? A sexuality education program for youth that models and teaches caring, compassion, respect, and justice. A holistic program that moves beyond the intellect to address the attitudes, values, and feelings that youth have about themselves and the world.

OWL models and teaches caring, compassion, respect, and justice. It helps high school-age youth address their attitudes and values, their feelings about themselves and their sexuality, and their attitudes toward others’ sexuality.  Participants are guided by trained facilitators through an engaging curriculum that addresses topics typically excluded from sexuality education and health classes.

CONTACT US:

For more information about programs for children, youth, and all kinds of families here at First Congregational, please contact Ian Bilinowich, Christian Education Director: youth@uccsalem.org or Rev. Yael Lachman: pastor@uccsalem.org.