The church's legacy is its children, and Mt. Zion makes special efforts to welcome and nurture the littlest members of our congregation, offering them an environment of security, exploration, and growth in which they can cultivate a strong, resilient faith.
The foundation of our children's education is Sunday school. Each week, loving teachers put together lessons that explain, expand, and make entertaining the stories of the Bible's best-known figures and events. Featuring singing, discussion, and art-making in age-appropriate groups, these weekly classes help instill love of God and neighbor into the hearts of our youngsters.
During worship services, kids are given an interactive bulletin to complete, and we provide activity bags for them to enjoy.
Also known as 'confirmation,' this intensive, two-year program tackles Lutheran theology and history while parsing creeds, prayers, and beliefs for analysis and discussion. There's a rigor and a process of self-examination that teens are guided through so that they have a chance to determine what the larger Lutheran faith is about and figure out how their own values fit into its framework.
The course of study, which happens in tandem with a handful of other local Lutheran churches, culminates in a retreat at Lutherock just prior to the service of confirmation.
Tapping into high points in the church season and the popular calendar, Mt. Zion hosts a variety of activities to engage children and youths. Vacation Bible School is a summer mainstay, when we partner with other local churches to immerse kids in stories and events that make the Bible more immediate and real. It's a true family event, drawing the entire church into its week-long festivities.
We also invite kids to an Awesome Autumn Adventure, our version of Halloween, complete with trunk-or-treat and fun costumes. We produce an amazing Christmas program each December, which never fails to impress parents and friends, and we feature a live nativity as well.
In addition, we have a Blessing of the Animals service and invite children to process into the sanctuary with streamers and banners during special occasions.
Kids like to be together, so we regularly schedule lock-ins, pizza parties, and other events where they can escape their standard schedules and simply hang out, talk, and enjoy each other's company. We give them an opportunity to discuss timely issues and figure out how to address them from a Biblical context. Plus, they have a safe place to consider and touch on the big questions of life.