The information shared from you through all church surveys, healing conversations, and calling conversations is that we as a church want more families to be part of our community. This is work to do together. I ask us to consider:

How do we become a church that welcomes and celebrates youth and families so they feel, know, and experience they belong here? How do we support the mental health crises of youth in our community and the parents who are doing all they can to support their children? How do we meet children where they are?

Most importantly, what if we were able to take the same energy and enthusiasm we have for activities such as social justice and witness or education on Tasajera and turn this inward to support the families, youth, and children of our congregation. Look at everything we have accomplished together – we can do this too.

Please prayerfully consider the role you could take in support of our families, youth, children, and parents. There’s a ministry for everyone. Here are four possible action items:

  1. Get to know the names of parents, youth, and children. Say hello to them. Introduce yourself. Ask them about their lives. Welcome them to move from the balcony and edges of the room to the front, right in the middle of it all.
  2. The Family Ministry Team is searching for a chair and additional members. Contact the board if it is your calling to be part of this creative work.
  3. Volunteer to help with Kids Community, Ohana Youth Group, or OWL.
  4. Lastly, we plan to send 35 people to the Western Regional Youth Event and Sierra Service Project, plus more to Camp Adams sleep away summer camps this year. These life-long transformative activities cost money for parents – consider, could you help support our kids and chaperones to attend?

I want my children and all of our families to be held, welcomed and celebrated here in our community. It is work that takes all of us.

Elly Vandegrift, Transition Team member and Mom