THE VISION:

We envision a church family that glorifies God by worshiping Him together across the generations and by embracing our call to make disciples of all nations.

KEY SUNDAY MORNING GOALS FOR OUR CHURCH FAMILY:

  • Gather together for intergenerational corporate worship.
  • Pursue instruction in biblical community.
  • Connect for relaxed and intentional fellowship.

PROPOSED SCHEDULE:

8:30 am – First Service

  • A 67-minute, intergenerational corporate worship service
  • Nursery for infants – Kindergarten
  • Older children are encouraged to stay for the whole service but will have an option of attending a children’s message during the sermon on the same text as the sermon and in another room. This is intended to be a short-term offering (at least a year) and should not replace the 10:00 am class for children.

9:45 am – Fellowship

In Commons for adults or in classrooms for children and youth

10:00 am – Classes

  • Age-specific instruction for children and youth 
  • Adult classes
  • Nursery

11:00 am – Fellowship

In Commons for adults or in classrooms for children and youth

11:15 am – Second Service

  • A 67-minute, intergenerational corporate worship service
  • Nursery for infants – Kindergarten

JULY 11 CHURCH FAMILY PRESENTATION

PROPOSED START DATE:

September 12, 2021

PLEASE JOIN US:

  • Pray for God’s will and direction.
  • Ask questions and make suggestions. This is a plan that needs your input! 
  • Email questions and feedback to elders@cherrydale.org.

HANDOUTS:

FAQs

Why does Cherrydale leadership believe this is the right direction for our church?

Cherrydale desires for children to fully participate in the worship service, not just to reach the next generation but also for the whole church to benefit from an intergenerational worship experience. We also desire for everyone to come for both worship and Sunday school. There is fruit to learning together in smaller communities and, for children, in age-specific settings. We believe that this new schedule helps us as a church family to better work toward our mission of making disciples who love God and people above all else.

Is this the right time to make a change of this magnitude given the year we have had with COVID?

There is probably never a perfect time to make a change like this, but COVID forced us to move in this direction. Now, we have an opportunity to capitalize on the growth we’ve seen over the year. For parents who are tired or hesitant to move in this direction, we have a plan in place (a children’s message during the sermon at the 8:30 am service) to allow everyone a chance to consider the model and be equipped to worship together as a church family. We will continually re-evaluate this plan to determine whether it is indeed achieving the outcome we desire.

What will this mean for adult classes?

We pray this will increase attendance for the classes, especially for parents of younger children. Also, parents and teenagers can attend the same class together if they would like. We would like for people to consider spending the year doing three semesters of classes and one semester of volunteering during the 10:00 am class hour.

What grade levels will remain in the service? How was that determined?

We are currently proposing that children ages 1st- 5th grade (through high school) remain in the service. This decision was made by talking with teachers familiar with this age group, researching ages and stages of child development, and looking at other churches to see what ages stay for the entirety of their worship services.

What will the children’s message be during the 8:30 am service? Why is this being offered?

Our heart’s desire is for all elementary students to benefit from and appreciate the whole service. We realize that for various reasons some families are not ready for that, which is completely understandable; we have just been through a pandemic, plus we are introducing this plan with only two months for you to process it. Therefore, we plan on providing a children’s message in another room during the sermon that follows the same biblical passage as the sermon (during the 8:30 am service only).

We will equip and encourage parents this year to utilize this children’s message as a bridge to help their child develop the appetite and skill for corporate worship. We are viewing this option as a bridge not a destination. Meaning, we are not committing to this forever but at least for the next church year. This should not be viewed as a replacement for 10:00 am Sunday school but as a temporary alternative to the sermon. Our encouragement is that if your child can stay, have them stay.

Will there be enough classrooms available in the building?

Yes, at this point all nursery room and classrooms are large enough to allow for enough space for all the children attending Sunday school and adult classes.

Can children remain in the nursery for both a service and the class time? How will that work?

Yes, children will remain in the nursery for both a service and Sunday school for 2-3 year-olds and continued care for newborns – 24-month-olds. For families attending the 8:30 am service, parents will have the option of taking their children to the nursery starting at 8:15 am or taking their children to the nursery before the sermon starts. After the service is over, parents can either pick their children up for a time of fellowship (and bagels!) or their children can remain in the nursery until adult classes have ended.

If parents are attending adult classes and then the 11:15 am service, they can take their children to the nursery during fellowship time or right before their class begins. The children can stay in the nursery until the 11:15 am service ends.

How will this schedule work for Children’s Ministry volunteers?

We will need more volunteers to provide care in the nurseries, but fewer volunteers for the Sunday school rooms upstairs.

How will this schedule impact visitors?

This information will be clearly publicized on Cherrydale’s website. Many visiting families have already researched our website and know what to expect of a Sunday morning. Our welcome team will also be ready to guide them. For visitors who don’t have children, our hope is that they will experience the joys of intergenerational worship.

Having children in the service with you can be challenging, especially for single parents. How can we support them?

We also recognize there are families with various circumstances, such as a family with a special needs child or a single mom facing the demands of parenting without a partner. In these cases, we as a church body need to come alongside and offer our support.

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