Christian Education

Our vision of Christian Education at Saint Andrew’s is inclusive, providing opportunities for personal spiritual growth to every member. It begins with providing support for parents at the baptism of their children through the elementary years, the Affirmation of Baptism (Confirmation), high school, and continues through all the years beyond. We are never finished with our faith. It is an ever-growing, ever-maturing, constantly changing process. It is new insights into God’s Word, new challenges to our faith in difficult circumstances, and deeper understandings of God’s unconditional love. It is a day-to-day faith journey…until the day God calls us home. Opportunities for Christian Education at Saint Andrew’s are as follows:

ADULT EDUCATION — Men’s Morning Bible Study, the Tuesday Morning Bible StudyFaith Journey and the Education Hour on Sunday mornings provide opportunities for all adult members to gather around the Word of God. There are multiple class offerings during the Adult Education hour to meet the variety of needs and interests in our adult membership, along with additional small group Bible studies that meet during the week.

CONFIRMATION (Affirmation of Baptism) — Our faithful teaching team continues to challenge our young people in grades 6 – 8 as they prepare for the Affirmation of their Baptism. The curriculum includes study of the Old and New Testaments, Luther’s Catechism, ethic issues in the context of the Ten Commandments, and visiting the worship services of other faiths. The Mentor Ministry links adults of mature faith with the young people to support, encourage and engage in discussions on faith issues during their confirmation years.

SUNDAY CHURCH SCHOOL — The Sunday Church School ministry provides faith-learning experiences for children from 2 years of age through 5th grade. We are currently using the “Life Together” curriculum by Augsburg Fortress, a lectionary-based curriculum, for most of the classes. The lessons in Sunday Church School and the children’s worship bulletins are the same as those in the worship service. The curriculum also follows the major parts of the worship service, Gather, Hear, Celebrate and Send, in order to help the children relate their Sunday Church School experience to the worship service.

HIGH SCHOOL BIBLE STUDY — A special educational opportunity for high school youth is offered through the High School Bible Class on Sunday mornings. Here they are able to build on their foundation of faith following the Affirmation of Baptism. The High School students meet during the Education Hour for Bible studies, discussions on current issues, a look at other faiths and religions, and a variety of topics of interest to students during their high school years.

FAITH STEPPING STONES — Faith Stepping Stones provides a way for parents and the church family to bless children again and again as they grow and learn more about God and God’s love for us. We are all caretakers of the faith…faith in relation to the temporal blessings (God’s provision while we are here on earth as reflected in the gifts of Bible, catechism, stoles, quilts, prayer pillows etc) and the eternal blessings of eternal life with God. Faith Stepping Stones also assist parents in fulfilling the promises made at baptism to 1) teach the Lord’s Prayer and Ten Commandments; 2) place the Holy Scriptures in the hands of their children; and 3) provide instruction in Christian faith so the children may lead a holy life.

FIRST COMMUNION — In Holy Baptism we promise to support parents as they introduce their children to the faith journey, and get ready for the child’s participation in the Lord’s Supper. The First Communion Ministry gives families an opportunity to share together an understanding of the Meal by using “The Welcome Table” and “A Place for You,” two books designed as instruction for young children. The age at which children first come to the Table is a personal, family decision made in partnership with Pastor McEachran. Our mission is to assist and support the parents when that time comes.

VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL — Vacation Bible School at Saint Andrew’s is usually held at the end of July for children from 2 years of age through 6th grade. The students are given an opportunity in a relaxed atmosphere to experience God’s Word in drama, singing, games, puzzles and crafts. Students in grades 4-6 are part of a VBS Camp experience, traveling each day to a different environment that relates to the story in some way.

CHURCH LIBRARY — The library is located next to the sanctuary and offers 2000 adult and juvenile books which stimulate and nurture your spiritual growth, and provide support in times of need. The library collection includes thought-provoking novels, non-fiction from credible sources, special collections for the church seasons,and a number of reference items for Bible study. The library has two computers and a selection of Bible reference and Christian entertainment software. Adittionally, the library offers useful and unique magazines, videos and audio tapes. Check-out periods range from one week for periodicals, video and audio tapes to one month for printed materials. Church visitors may borrow materials by leaving their name, address, and phone numbers. The library is open and staffed on Sunday mornings, and is available throughout the week by checking in with the church office. It is a pleasant environment for quiet reading or meditation, and a comfortable and convenient meeting spot for small groups. A kitchenette adjoins the library for beverage service.

NURSERY — The Nursery is open for both the 8:30 and 11:00 services during the Sunday Church School year and for the 11:00 service during the summer. The nursery is staffed by two paid attendants, and supported by volunteer parents. Saint Andrew’s is working to grow this ministry within Christian Education and reach out to parents and children from the point of baptism until they enter the Sunday Church School Program. It is the goal of the Nursery to nurture both parent and child by providing a comfortable and welcome home for both as they continue on their families’ walk with God.