Junior Church Christmas Party
Sunday 10th December 2017 3:30pm to 5:30pm
Every year the Junior Church leaders organise a Christmas Party, which is open to everyone who attends Junior Church and/or Pre-School Praise. There will be:
- carol singing;
- party food;
- and a visit from Santa Claus!
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Welcome to Junior Church at St. Margaret's Church Horsforth. The following is a brief explanation for parents / carers about what Junior Church is for.
What is Junior Church?
Junior Church is part of the (main) Sunday 10 am service. It provides an introduction to Christian life for younger members of the congregation and allows them to participate in age-appropriate worship (e.g. silly songs with lots of actions). Showing kids the value that Christianity can have in their lives. Having fun!
What happens in Junior Church?
A typical Junior Church session starts with everyone gathering round for a brief introduction by one of the leaders. The kids are encouraged to tell us about any special events in their lives (birthdays, trips, pets giving birth etc). A (topical) prayer is said and a hymn (traditional, modern or downright silly) is sung.
We then break up into three group: younger (up to Year 1); middle (Year 2 to Year 7 inclusive); older (Year 8 and above). There is one leader for each group. A group may do craft, quizzes, short dramas etc. The older the group the more bible study there will be. The focus is on learning through fun.
Which Sundays will there be a Junior Church?
There is no Junior Church when there is family communion or a parade service. Family communion is a family focussed alternative to parish communion. There will be something for both adults and children. Parade services are attended by the uniformed organisations associated with St Margaret's (e.g. Scouts, Brownies, Cubs, Rainbows) and the service is focussed on children. The second Sunday of the month is always family communion or a parade service, and there will be no Junior Church on that Sunday. There may be parade services on other Sundays in the month (e.g. Mothering Sunday) and there will be no Junior Church on those Sundays either.
There is no Junior Church during the main school summer holidays (late July to early September). Junior church is often skipped for the Sunday between Christmas and New Year as well.
Where is Junior Church held?
Junior Church is always held in the Parish Centre next to the church itself. Sometimes during the summer months we may go out into (but never leaving) the church grounds.
When does Junior Church take place during the service?
Early in the service, the Junior Church members and leaders will gather at the front for a blessing, and then head-off to the Parish Centre. For communion services, the kids will be back just before or at the start of communion. For morning worship services, the kids will be back in time for the last hymn.
What age groups does Junior Church cover?
We teach three age groups: younger; middle ; older (or youth). The youngest, unaccompanied children we take are ones in reception. However parents / carers are welcome to stay and play with children younger than this. Similarly parents / carers are always welcome to accompany their children to Junior Church.
Any parents / carers who want to stay with their children in the youngest (key stage 1) group are particularly welcome since the children in this group often need more help.
Do my kids have to go into Junior Church?
Absolutely not. Children are always welcome in (main) church, and there is a dedicated play corner.
What checks are performed on the Junior Church leaders?
All junior church leaders have up to date DBS checks. There is a minimum of three DBS checked junior church leaders in each session. The Church of England considers Safeguarding to be a high priority.
The older group in Junior Church have been writing their own psalms; see Junior Church Psalms.
Junior Church Psalms
The older members of Junior Church were inspired to write their own psalms as part of a recent study of psalms.
God is glorious and mighty!
You believe in us,
And you care for everyone even if they’ve done wrong.
The tree and plants are perfect and calming.
God, you always let me know that I am loved.
I’m grateful to you Jesus, because you died for me.
Therefore, I will spread your love through me to others,
no matter who they are, no matter what beliefs.
God I will follow your path
Because you are so loving and powerful
And you care for all people and animals.
Your world is beautiful and filled with amazing things!
Thank you God for protecting me and those I care about.
Thank you Jesus for showing me how to make a bad situation better
Because of the love and grace you showed us.
Therefore, I will be thankful for love with others.
Lord, you are all powerful
Because you are so good
and so caring for your people.
Seeing a sunset or sunrise is what keeps me going,
The most beautiful thing is hearing the song of the birds coming alive.
You protect us with your love.
I love you Jesus, because you died to save me from my sins.
Because of you, I will share your love with others
and make this world a brighter place.
Lord, I give thanks to you!
Because you are filled with the love of the universe
And you guide us with your love.
Your oceans are enchanting and your mountains are wonderful.
You comfort me when times aren’t the best
And you make sure whatever happens, it will all end well.
Jesus, I know I am loved because you died for me.
Therefore, I will praise you forever and always.
O Lord, you are amazing!
Because you are so loving
And you are the joy in everyone’s heart.
The world is beautiful and sunsets are calming.
God you teach me how to lead a good life.
Thanks you for believing in us,
You died for us even when we doubted you.
Therefore, I will be grateful and give thanks for your unending love.
Lord you are so wonderful
Because you are all loving
And you are always there for me.
Let us praise you for your flowers and you trees!
God you lead me on the path towards all things good,
I know I will always find my way with you by my side.
I love you Jesus because you never give up on me.
Therefore, I will be forgiving and loving to others.
Safeguarding at St. Margaret’s
St Margaret’s works to encourage a safe environment for children, young people and for vulnerable adults at risk who worship, visit or who are employed at St. Margaret’s Parish Church, Horsforth.
The Parochial Church Council has adopted the ‘Safeguarding All God’s People’ Safeguarding Policy Statement used by the Diocese of Leeds.
St. Margaret’s aim to create a safe environment where children and young people are nurtured and protected, and where all people - especially those who may be vulnerable for any reason - are able to worship and pursue their faith journeys with encouragement and in safety.
We follow all the relevant national guidelines, as well as Church of England and Diocesan policies and practice. We ensure that those in roles which require it undertake regular and appropriate Safeguarding Training, and that all PCC members are familiar with and supportive of the Diocesan Policy and Practice Guidelines.
Safeguarding Co-ordinators for the Parish are as follows:
In an emergency, a member of the clergy can also be contacted for advice and support.
And for advice at the Diocesan level:
- Jenny Leccardi 07872 005 189
Good Working Practises in the Diocese:
- Treat everyone with dignity and respect.
- Avoid questionable activity and inappropriate language.
- Sensitively challenge unacceptable behaviour.
- Be prepared to refer to someone with greater experience / expertise.
- Be available but don't intrude on personal space and privacy.
- Be aware that even caring physical conduct may be misinterpreted.
- Don't question or investigate.
- Ensure appropriate supervision.
- Record any accidents.
If someone confides in you:
- Listen carefully and sensitively to any disclosure.
- Assure them they are not to blame.
- Recognise that special care is required at moments when you are discussing sensitive issues with children or young people.
- Explain what you are going to do and don't delay in taking that action.
- Preferably within an hour, write down the content of you conversation with dates and times.
- Sign, date and keep safely.
- Seek advice from the diocesan safeguarding advisor if you are unsure of what to do.
You must never:
- Be left along with a child.
- Strike a child or an adult.
- Show favouritism.
- Make fun of others.
- Have inappropriate physical or verbal contact with children or adults, make suggestive remarks or gestures.
- Permit abusive youth peer activities (e.g. initiation ceremonies, ridiculing, bullying).
- Jump to conclusions without checking facts.
- Exaggerate or trivialise abuse issues.
- Allow children to be put at risk by careless behaviour.
- Take children on trips without parental permission.
- Take pictures of any child/vulnerable adult without the written permission of a parent/carer.
Social Media Safeguarding Yourself
Don't send offensive messages and be careful what you download.
Calls to numbers below are all free.
- 0800 1111 or can be contacted at: FREEPOST 1111, London, N1 0BR
- Stop It Now! National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC)
- 0808 800 5000
- Stop It Now! (Lucy Faithfull Foundation)
- 0808 1000 900
- Elderly Abuse
- 0808 808 8141
- Domestic Violence
- 0808 2000 247
- 0808 800 2222
- Samaritans Caller Helpline
- 116 123