Update on Family Ministries

Sunday School

Thanks again to all of the parishioners who have stepped up to teach this year. We are very grateful and there has been a smooth transition as our new teachers have taken over.

As we head into the Advent season, the Sunday School students will be preparing to welcome Jesus into the world. On the first Sunday of Advent, everyone will be making Advent wreaths to bring home and use. Our Table Talks will include the readings done in church and also in Sunday School, and each week as we light the candles there will be questions that you can use at home to discuss the meaning of the candles and how we can prepare ourselves to welcome the Lord.

The 3rd-5th graders will spend Advent preparing a puppet show of the Christmas story, which they will perform for the younger children on December 18th. They’ll be working on scenery and puppets and doing a run-through or two to get themselves comfortable with the process. Whether they can be there every Sunday or only one, please bring your child to join what has been a fun experience in the past.

Ready to go join their families in the main service after Sunday School on Christ the King Sunday / November 20, 2016


First, a big thanks to everyone for your patience and help as I’ve been trying to balance my roles at the church. Your children have done an amazing job at taking on greater responsibility for themselves and the parents have been wonderful about stepping up when I needed additional support. I am eternally grateful.

If anyone is interested in claiming a Sunday morning each month when they could help out with robing, please let me know. We could easily schedule your child to serve on the same day, so you are not committed to an additional week at church.

Finally, we still need to fill some slots for Christmas Eve, please let me know if you’re available for one of the services.

Getting ready for the procession for the Christmas Eve Family Service / December 24, 2015
Getting ready for the procession for the Christmas Eve Family Service / December 24, 2015

Youth Groups

We have gotten off to a great start this Fall, thanks to everyone participating. Thanks also to the parents who have provided dinner for everyone at the meetings.

Chris Working, Ryan Wilvert and Dorothy Smith have continued their great work with our older students. Our high school students raised money for their mission trip by babysitting during the SJES Gala and had a great weekend retreat at Verdun, in addition to volunteering for the Wood Ministry and at the Habitat Blitz Build. The spring schedule, including the ski trip, will be out in the few weeks so get ready to mark your calendars.

#mannaquinchallenge with the middle school youth group! 😎

A video posted by Saint James’ Episcopal Church (@saintjameswarrenton) on

Our new team leading the Middle School Youth Group hit the ground running this year. Coy and Kayla Ferrell, Denise and Tom Harris and James Post have done a fabulous job engaging with our middle schoolers and harnessing their energy. The kids have had a great time with team building activities (including their answer to the Mannequin challenge last week) and we have found a strong curriculum to help prepare them for Confirmation. We do still need parents to provide dinner for our December 18th meeting, let me know if you can help out.

Formation time during Middle School Youth Group / December 12, 2016

This post was originally published in the 2016 Winter Newsletter.

You can contact Laura Updyke, Interim Director of Family Ministries, at laura.updyke@saintjameswarrenton.org