Families of Faith
Families of Faith classes bring together children at each grade level and their parents to begin a faith conversation around one topic. These classes open space and give vocabulary to continue the conversation at home. They are also opportunities for Gloria Dei families to become better acquainted with one another. Each class has a worship component, where we celebrate the Baptismal promises and the growing faith of our children within the faith community.
Welcome to Sunday School Party!
Children who are three years by September 1 are invited to begin Sunday School. The Welcome Party introduces three year-olds to their classroom, to new friends, to their teachers, and to the activities of Sunday School before the program year begins. Parents become familiar with the Beginner curriculum and schedule. This gathering helps everyone to feel more comfortable as they begin a new Sunday School adventure at Gloria Dei.
“The Beginners Bible” is presented to all three year-olds in worship on the second Sunday of the program year. All Beginner Sunday School lessons begin by reading from this storybook. Parents are encouraged to read and continue the conversation at home.
Let's Pray Together!
Prayer is simply talking with God, and children say the most amazing prayers! This class helps children and parents to find new times and places and creative ways to pray – individually and as a family.
Fours practice a prayer with a pastor during class, and lead the congregation in prayer during worship following class.
Jesus, Our Friend
Jesus is at the center of our faith; Jesus is God’s gift of love and life! Kindergarten children, who are growing in their relational skills, and their parents learn how Jesus is their best friend. This class introduces the Kindergarten textbook, “The Jesus Storybook Bible,” to families.
“The Jesus Storybook Bible” is presented to each Kindergarten child during worship following this class. Parents are encouraged to read and continue the story conversation at home.
Let's Explore Worship Together!
First graders are growing in their reading and attention skills. They can begin to follow the written liturgy, readings, and songs in worship. This class helps first graders and their parents to understand worship and to look more closely at the Gloria Dei sanctuary where we worship together. This class meets two Sundays in a row, first to hear Tim Strand explain and demonstrate the organ and secondly to explore our worship space.
First graders join the procession into worship immediately following class, and welcome the congregation to worship.
Caring for God's Gifts
God creates all things, and it is our responsibility to care for God’s gifts to us. Second graders have the great privilege of meeting our rural partners at Waverly Lutheran Church in Trimont, MN. Dan and Kendra Helvig, a farming family from Waverly, join our second graders three times during this year to talk about how they care for the land, plants, and animals that God has placed in their care. This is our “Sowing Seeds” partnership, which culminates in September of the next year, when we attend the Waverly Harvest Homecoming.
Another gift that God has given us is money. Second graders and their parents also attend the Thrivent class, “Parents, Kids, and Money Matters,” to learn about saving, sharing, and spending money. This is a very helpful and popular class for kids and adults!
Second graders are encouraged to participate in worship by collecting offering and carrying the gifts forward to the table.
God's Word for You!
Third graders begin the year with the culmination of our “Sowing Seeds” program by attending Harvest Homecoming with our friends at Waverly Lutheran Church in Trimont, MN. We travel by bus to Waverly for worship, followed by a delicious warm lunch, and time with animals, farm machinery, hayrides, and games. It is a marvelous day of faith and friendship!
Families must register for Waverly Harvest Homecoming by using the event sidebar.
Third graders also begin an adventure into the Bible. Third graders and their parents attend one class to learn about the Bible, after which they receive their gift Bible in worship. The following week third graders and parents bring their Bible to another class and begin to learn how to use their new Bibles. This begins a life time of discovery in God’s Word!
“The Deep Blue Kids Bible” is presented to third graders in worship. This Bible is designed especially for children and is full of tools to help kids read and understand the Bible.
Given for You!
At the Last Supper Jesus said that the bread and wine were his body and blood given for us. Fourth graders and their parents come together to more deeply understand what this means for us personally.
Fourth graders participate in worship directly after class by welcoming the congregation to Communion.
Gifted to do Good!
Fifth graders and their parents take time to reflect on the important people who have influenced their lives and the gifts that fifth graders bring to the world. The class encourages parents to inspire their children to use their gifts to serve God and others, and to do good for the world.
Fifth graders participate in worship immediately following class by naming a person who has been a great influence in their lives. The community of faith is encouraged by the growing faith of our children!
Sixth graders and their parents meet with youth director, Katie LeClair and pastors to learn about the confirmation program at Gloria Dei. This is a transition from Children’s Ministry to Youth Ministry, and a celebration of the promises of Baptism!
Families of Faith second grade class culminates in Harvest Homecoming at Waverly Lutheran. Here is a glimpse of the wonderful day at Waverly, September 2015.