Sunday School and Youth Group at PCC
Our Sunday School consisted of two classes plus a Youth Group class that also meets on Sunday mornings. We had three very dedicated Sunday School teachers, Lisa Lindquist for the younger children, Dee Dorsey for the older children, and Holly Proulx for the Youth Group. Linda Bogosian is the Sunday School Superintendent who gaves the Children’s Message during the worship service. The children and youth began in the worship service, heard a Children’s Message, and then depart for their classes around 10:15am. In addition to learning about the Christian faith, our Sunday School sponsored a NEADS dog, an adorable black lab puppy, Benny!
Our Youth Group were all Youth Deacons and faithfully served our local congregation and the wider church. They participated in our own worship service as lay readers and at the Odd Fellows Nursing Home in Worcester, where Pastor Gary led a service once a month. Several of our Sunday School children sang in a Youth Choir. Our Sunday School children and Youth Group also participated in a joint ecumenical Vacation Bible School with First Baptist Church and Wesley United Methodist Church every year which this past summer attracted over 100 children and several dozen adult volunteers. The Sunday School and Youth Group also sponsored throughout the year suppers, candy sales, and other fundraising activities, as well as going on recreational outings together with the Sunday School staff and chaperones. Unfortunately, with the closing of the church, all Sunday School meetings, classes, and events were stopped as well.
We offered a Bible Study on the second and fourth Thursday evenings of the month at 7:00pm. The last book we discussed was A New Heaven and a New Earth by J. Richard Middleton. Bible Studies in the past have included The Protestant Reformation, St. Augustine’s Confessions, the “Spiritual, but not Religious/Secular Tide,” “Creation Stories in the Old Testament, New Testament, and the Quran,” Lazarus as the Beloved Disciple in the Fourth Gospel, “How to Read the Bible,” and “The End Times.”
During the church season of Lent, we offered a six-week Lenten Series on each Sunday following the worship service and a brown bag lunch. The Lenten Series was suitable for middle school youth and older. Last year during the Sundays of Lent, we presented two films from 2018, Paul, Apostle of Christ, and First Reformed. In the past, for our Lenten Series, we have shown episodes of Little House on the Prairie, Everybody Loves Raymond, The Vicar of Dibley, The Twilight Zone, The Big Bang Theory, and the films The Young Messiah and Risen.
We also occasionally offered a Movie Matinee on Sundays following our worship service and a brown bag lunch. These are Hollywood films that have a spiritual message or raise values or issues that Christians should address. We did not show films for entertainment purposes (although it is a very entertaining way to talk about these issues!) but rather as part of the Christian Education curriculum of our church. Following the film, we used to stay to discuss the message or values in relation to our faith so that we may grow spiritually. Many of our Youth Group and older Sunday School children attend these films as well, and so, they are always suitable for a young age group. Films we have shown in the past include Wall-E, The Bride of Frankenstein, The Blind Side, To Kill a Mockingbird, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, Whale Rider, Lilies of the Field, Brother Sun, Sister Moon, Plymouth Adventure, The Others, What’s Cooking?, and ParaNorman.
We had officially voted to become Open and Affirming toward the LGBTQ (Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual-Transgender-Questioning) community. We had an Open and Affirming Task Team that has studied the texts used as “weapons” against LGBTQ persons and has hosted the film The Perks of Being a Wallflower and the documentary For the Bible Tells Me So, both of which were followed by lively discussions.