Youth Fellowship

Four Sundays a year, our Sunday School children gather together to participate in a group lesson.  This lesson is not only a chance to deviate from the standard curriculum and venture outside their classrooms into the parish hall, but most importantly a chance to connect with each other without the ‘grade level boundaries’.  The youngest children love having a chance to partner with their older peers.  The older children are excited to help the younger ones with a project or activity.  It truly is an opportunity for the next generation of Good Shepherd to build a sense of community.

This week, February 12, will be our third Youth Fellowship Sunday of the school year.  Lori Bathurst will lead the children in a lesson about Miracles.  Traditionally, our Youth Fellowship lesson features group discussion and typically a game or craft.  Teachers from each grade level assist the Youth Fellowship leaders; working with each child individually and in smaller groups.  When the bell rings, the children are usually busy putting the finishing touches on their project or wrapping up an activity with a group of their peers.

Youth Fellowship lessons are just one of the ways we try to enhance our standard Sunday School curriculum.  These sessions support one of our goals which is ensuring our kids have a sense of fellowship and belonging.

We hope your children join us this Sunday, February 12, 2017, to participate in Youth Fellowship and a chance to engage in a lesson about Miracles!


High School Guest Speakers

Remember your high school years?  The nervousness that surrounds going to a ‘bigger school’, the pressure of exams and eventually applying to colleges, the excitement (and sometimes dread) of starting your first job, and of course the normal ups and downs of the friendships you make throughout your teenage years.  High school can certainly feel a bit like being on a rollercoaster.

At Good Shepherd, we want to ensure our teen parishioners have a strong spiritual foundation to build on as young adults.  Our goal is to have these parishioners excited to hang out with their church family.

Unlike the younger grades, our high school program (which includes grades 8 through 12) is based on a discussion approach.  The students typically read through and discuss that week’s gospel lesson.  Often times, the conversation leads to current events, concerns the students have in their everyday life, or issues they may be facing.  They have an opportunity to connect with each other in a safe environment and maintain a sense of community.

To enhance our high school program, during the second half of the year we introduced guest speakers.  Topics like stress management, volunteer programs, managing anxiety, heading to college, addiction and faith are discussed.  The guest speaker spends a few minutes sharing their background and experiences and then invites questions from the group.  The result is a step beyond their typical school curriculum–a chance to really dig in to their faith and find encouragement from others who have ‘been there’.  The centerpiece of each discussion involves–most importantly–the speaker’s relationship with God.  The students seem to really enjoy meeting and hearing the perspective of various adult members of our parish.

We want to continue to grow our high school program so if you have suggestions for discussion topics or other ways to enhance our curriculum, we’d love to hear from you!