Children and Families

News and Announcements from the Children, Families, and Youth Ministries of First Parish Church

August 7, 2019 - Youth Choir Schedule

No rehearsals Thursday, Thanksgiving Day.

Extra pageant rehearsals will be held on Friday, December 20th from 3:45-5:30 and Saturday, December 21st from 9:00-noon.

No rehearsals on Wednesdays, December 25th and January 1st and no rehearsals on Thursdays, December 26th and January 2nd. 

Normal Wednesday evening rehearsals will resume on January 8th.

Our next youth and children’s choir family supper will be held on Thursday, January 9th at 5:30 – our soup supper and talent show.

Regular Rehearsal Schedule:

The Westminster Choir – THURSDAYS 4:30-5:30 p.m. – is for youth in 6th through 12th grades.  We sing on 9/22, 10/27, 11/17, 12/15, 12/24 (Pageant), 1/26, 2/23, 3/15, 4/12 (Easter), and 5/10.

The Cherub Choir –  THURSDAYS 5:30-6:00 p.m. –  is for children ages 4 through first grade. We sing on 9/29, 10/27, 11/24, 12/22, 12/24 (Pageant), 1/26, 2/16, 3/8, 4/12 (Easter), and 5/10 (Musical).

The Junior Choir –  THURSDAYS 6:00-6:40 p.m. –  is for children in 2nd through 5th grades. We sing on 9/29, 10/27, 11/24, 12/22, 12/24 (Pageant), 1/26, 2/16, 3/8, 4/12 (Easter), and 5/10 (Musical). 

The inter-generational world percussion ensemble is also an option for youth in grades 2 and up.  This ensemble meets Wednesday evenings from 5:25-5:55.

June 9, 2019 - Family Pentecost Service @ the Labyrinth in the Woods

Pentecost is a Christian holiday that takes place 50 days after Easter, and celebrates the pouring out of the Holy Spirit onto the apostles. Since Pentecost marks the beginning of the ministry of the apostles, it is often referred to as the “Birthday of the Church.”

This year, as Senior Pastor Mary Baard was on sabbatical, several children volunteered to lead this year’s Family Labyrinth Service. They wrote prayers to share, selected music to perform, read scripture, led liturgies, and even helped write our Celtic-inspired Pentecost story (in the form of a Mad Libs). It was a delight to see the movement of the Spirit in our children and youth!

Thank you to all who celebrated the “Birthday of the Church” at the Labyrinth with us this year!


October 11, 2018 - ’18-’19 FPC 8th-12th Grade Activities

Dear 8th through 12th Graders –

There are exciting ways to be involved in life, worship, and service alongside wonderful people from First Parish and the wider community. We hope you’ll plan to be a part of it all. Here are some of our upcoming Youth Ministry opportunities:

October 14, 4-7pm – Gathering: Inter-generational movie night – Coco. Parents and youth are welcome to come for a viewing and discussion of Pixar’s latest film, which deals with music, memory, grief, and hope. Pizza will be served! RSVP to Jessie Crabtree at

October 20, 8am-12pmService: With Window Dressers, build window inserts for neighbors to improve energy efficiency and make heating more affordable. Workshop at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.  Parents and Youth welcome.

November 4, 11, 18, 10-11am, Fellowship Hall – Worship and the Arts: Help create the “Friendly Beasts” as characters in our Christmas Pageant with FPC’s Juley Salisbury in these three sessions.

December 1, 1-3pm – Gathering: Advent Decorating and Potluck. Come help deck our halls for the Advent and Christmas season and share a meal together. Contact Amanda Similien at for more information or to RSVP!

- 6th & 7th Grade: Echo the Story

We are gearing up for an exciting year at church for all ages, and wanted to invite you to be a part of a Sunday morning class for sixth and seventh graders called Echo the Story.

Sometimes it is easy for us to forget that the bible was not originally a single book, but it has been with us through the ages as different writings and stories: stories shared and cared for by our ancestors as they wondered about and celebrated God in their lives. They told stories about people who were very real to them: stories about people named Abraham and Sarah, Mary, David, and lots and lots of stories about Jesus… all to help them share where they saw God in their lives, and in the world.

Echo the Story will help us prepare for the confirmation program next church year (which we hope you will be a part of!) grounding us in the big picture and themes of our bible’s story, so we can explore those even more deeply as we worship, serve, learn, and connect to the life of First Parish and the life of the church around the world.

We want to explore telling those stories out loud, listening to them together, and responding to them with our imaginations in art, writing, and in our conversations together. We hope that you’ll join us!

If you have any questions, please email Amanda at Below is the schedule for our classes. When we are not in class, we invite you to stay in worship with your family.


October 14th – Creation

October 21st  – Disruption

(Off October 28 for Geoff Parker’s Farewell)

November 4th  – The Promise

November 11th  – Exodus

November 18th – Commands

November 25th – Judges and Kings

December 2nd – Advent-ure!


(Advent through February we invite you to attend worship with your family.)


March 3rd – Exile

March 10th – God-with-us

March 17th – Miracles

March 24th – God’s Kingdom

March 31st – Death-to-life

April 7th – The Church



We hope you’ll join us!



Mary and Amanda

August 27, 2018 - Church School Starts September 9

Weekly church school and nursery care will begin on Sunday, September 9th! After worship, we’ll hold a special family coffee/lemonade hour out on the Pilgrim House green to kick-off the church school year.

Parents are welcome to bring children in the nursery through 1st grade to their classrooms in Pilgrim House (across the street) before the 10:00 AM worship service begins. Children in grades 2-5 will start the morning in worship with their families and then go to church school in Pilgrim House after the children’s moment.

We are thrilled to have a nurturing and dedicated staff of teachers and caregivers this year:

  • Jocelyn Hooydonk will continue caring for infants and toddlers in our main floor nursery. (Yes, the nursery moved upstairs over the summer!)
  • Erin Scott will teach our preschool through 1st grade group.
  • Bridgette Hodgkins will move up to lead grades 2-5.
  • Children in grades 6 and 7 will have a special class starting later in the fall; stay tuned for details!

For more information please contact Becky at 729-7331 or We are looking forward to a great year with our children and families!


August 23, 2018 - Youth Choir Schedule

Youth Choirs

There are ample opportunities for children and youth to participate in the Music Ministry at First Parish in 2018-2019! These youth choirs will sing in worship about once a month, present a Christmas Pageant on December 24th (all youth choirs), sing in the spring concert on March 31st at 3:00p.m., and present a musical on May 19th (Junior and Cherub Choirs).

Youth Choirs at FPC:

The Cherub Choir –  THURSDAYS 5:30-6:00 p.m. – is for children ages 4 through first grade. They sing in worship on 9/30, 10/21, 11/18, 12/16, 12/24 (Pageant), 1/13, 2/10, 3/3, 3/31 (Spring Concert at 3:00), 4/7, 4/21 (Easter), and 5/19 (Musical).

The Junior Choir –  THURSDAYS 6:00-6:40 p.m. – is for children in 2nd through 5th grades. They sing in worship on 9/30, 10/21, 11/18, 12/24 (Pageant), 1/13, 2/10, 3/3, 3/31 (Spring Concert at 3:00), 4/7, 4/21 (Easter), and 5/19 (Musical).

The Westminster Choir – THURSDAYS 4:30-5:30 p.m. – is for youth in 6th through 12th grades.  We sing 10/14, 11/11, 12/16, 12/24 (Pageant), 1/27, 2/10, 3/31 (morning worship), 3/31 (Spring concert at 3:00), 5/5 (note date change), and 5/19.

June 17, 2018 - Church School at the Labyrinth

On Sunday, June 17th, our FPC kiddos wrapped up their Church School year with a special worship service at the Labyrinth in the Woods.

We all began by walking the Labyrinth (some of us made it further than others!), and did some call-and-response singing together.

Candi Hine played her Native American flute- and told us a little about how she came by her extraordinary instrument.


Pastor Mary shared a Jewish Midrash on Noah’s wife, Na’amah, in which she collects seeds while her husband pairs the animals.


The children enjoyed making their best “rain storm” sounds to help tell the story.

We closed with some music and fellowship time together.


Pastor Mary will be holding additional Labyrinth Sunday Worship Services at 8:30 am on July 8 and August 26.

May 25, 2018 - Family Worship at the Labyrinth: June 17

The final church school experience of the ’17-’18 year will be held at the Labyrinth!

On Sunday, June 17 at 10:00 AM we will celebrate the end of the school year with a family worship service led by Pastor Mary at the outdoor labyrinth. (There will be no nursery care or church school in Pilgrim House on June 17.)

“Summer Sundays” will begin on June 24 and will continue through Labor Day. Childcare for infants and toddlers will be provided in the Pilgrim House nursery throughout the summer. Older children who are looking for an alternative to the sanctuary worship service may be able to join the nursery if there is space. Depending on the ages and number of children in attendance, this group may go outside to the playground.

Regular church school will resume on Sunday, September 9. We wish you all a wonderful summer!


May 20, 2018 - Children’s Musical: The Story of Jonah and the Great Fish

On Sunday, May 20, the Junior Choir presented The Story of Jonah and the Great Fish. Thank you to everyone who helped make our Children’s Musical a spirited time for all!


May 11, 2018 - Children’s Musical: Jonah and the Great Fish

Come sit right down and hear a whale of a tale from a Bible page!

Experience the underwater adventures of Jonah and the redemption of the people of Nineveh as the Junior Choir presents THE STORY OF JONAH AND THE GREAT FISH on Sunday, May 20th during worship at 10:00 am in the Sanctuary.

Witness God’s mercy and forgiveness as the people of Nineveh shift from being bad to the bone to blessing the Lord, and Jonah learns the lesson of obedience to God’s call.  You will be part of the story telling process, so come, and support our young people as they present this spring musical!

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