- Love Self: We are all lovable in the eyes of God.
- Love Neighbor: Children can alleviate the suffering of others.
- Love God: Children already experience holiness in their lives.
We are committed to instilling values of generosity, love, kindness and gratitude into our children through the fostering of intergenerational relationships and outreach projects that develop a commitment to thinking about and serving others in our parish, our community and beyond. Our Sunday school program offers multiple service opportunities for even our youngest parishioners - and their families - throughout the year.
Regular communication between teachers and parents is an integral part of our program. We believe that the difficult and complex conversations are started here, and continued at home. Love First aims to stand the test of time, to give children and their families tools to use faith, religion and God to overcome today's challenges, and those yet to come. Particular attention is paid to helping children develop a language for God that is open-ended and responsive to the complexities of our lives.
Sunday school begins at 9:45 a.m. on Sunday mornings in the Parish Hall classrooms. Children are escorted by their teachers to the church during the peace and announcements of the 10 a.m. service (approximately 10:40 a.m.). All are welcome to take communion and children are especially encouraged to take part in this holy ritual. Saint Barnabas offers a kid-friendly introduction to taking communion in the Episcopal Church: why we do it, when we do it, and how we do it. If you would like your children to attend this session, please let us know at any time throughout the school year.
Registration for Sunday School begins each fall, and newcomers are welcome to join at any time throughout the year. For more information about registration, click here. All Sunday school teachers and volunteers are CORI-checked prior to engaging with our children, and all teachers are SafeChurch trained. The safety of children is our highest priority.
Our PreK-3rd Grade classes use Love First, our curriculum that uses contemporary literature and age-appropriate biblical stories to explore ideas about God: who and what God is, and what God means to us. Children are encouraged to be curious, to ask questions, and to build meaning around God that resonates with them today, while allowing flexibility to grow and change.
Love Self is an introduction to thinking about ourselves as unique, lovable beings, to God and others, and also the importance of loving ourselves. Themes of mindfulness, self-care, and self-worth are presented through literature that deliberately portrays characters from underrepresented populations.
The heart of our curriculum is the commitment to Love Neighbor. Emphasis is placed on addressing the needs of vulnerable parishioners, and how children of this age can alleviate their suffering. Children and their teachers will discuss the complexities of poverty, homelessness and hunger, animal treatment, environmentalism, equality and justice, commitment to taking care of others in need. All families are invited to participate in these outreach activities.
Love God invites children to ponder what/who God is, what we mean when we say “God is Love,” and where God can be found in the work we do for others. Time will be spent reflecting on previous activities about loving others, making the connection that God is present whenever and wherever love is found.
Grades 4 through 6 continue with our curriculum, Love First, with particular emphasis on addressing the challenges children face today.
Love Self is a deeper exploration of what makes each of us unique and lovable, to ourselves and to God, with open conversations about courage, friendship, family, and how to overcome adversity.
Love Neighbor is the heart of the Saint Barnabas Sunday School program. This unit emphasizes loving and caring for others in need, and provides children multiple opportunities to ponder and discuss the complexity of issues like poverty, homelessness, hunger, and equality. Children will explore themes of empathy, gratitude, and justice, and how and when they intersect with loving others. Particular emphasis is placed on developing intergenerational relationships through letter writing and make-one-give-one projects that give children opportunities to engage with other parishioners.
Love God focuses on prayer, finding God in our work, and how to verbally express ways of talking about God that are flexible enough to address the complexities of our lives. Children are exposed to multiple ways of praying, including using color, beads, journals, etc. and are encouraged to use these ways to communicate with God as a way to alleviate the suffering of others, to calm oneself, or to cope with adversity.
The Saint Barnabas Youth Service Corps is designed for youth in grades 7 through 12. Click here for more information.