The embodied and mysterious nature of worship in an Anglo-Catholic parish is highly evocative for children. At St. Paul’s, the look and smell of incense, the use of chant and song, and the employment of the body in worship—bowing, crossing ourselves, touching the water of the font to remember our baptisms, lighting candles in the presence of the icon of Mary—all attract the attention and participation of children in the liturgy.
We treasure children at St. Paul’s and treasure the privilege of helping to influence children in their journey to adulthood as Christians. In our liturgy, in our children’s formation and in our relationships with children and their parents, we seek both to honor children’s dignity as well as prepare them for healthy participation in an adult world. Thus, we seek to provide ways children to encounter the stuff of our Biblical and historical traditions as well as ways for each child to express his or her creativity.
To the caretakers of our youngest members
· Sing the hymns, pray, and respond. Children learn liturgical behavior from you.
· If you need to leave Mass with your child, feel free to do so, but please come back.
· Remember! The way we welcome children in church directly affects the way they respond to Church, to God, and to Christ. Let them know that they are at home in this liturgical gathering.
· Relax! God put the wiggle in children; don’t feel you have to suppress it here.
· Feel free to sit towards the front where it’s easier for little ones to see and hear.
· Please let us know how we can become more welcoming to your children.
Children ages 11 and up are welcome to serve in our Sunday liturgies as Acolytes. Contact Mark Taylor, Associate for Liturgy, to learn more.