Sunday Children’s Groups

Sunday Children’s Groups

Our weekly children’s ministry is on Sunday during the 10.30am service. We are blessed to have a thriving children’s ministry with 160 children on our roll. Our community of children is called TIDE, and when they leave the service to go into different rooms for their groups, it does feel like the tide going out!

Babies and toddlers are welcome to stay in the service or there is an unsupervised crèche off the Community Room with toys. You service can be heard through the speaker in this room.

To ensure your children are safe in our care we ask for all children attending groups to be registered with the church. Registration is a simple process made online. If you are new to St Mark’s or haven’t registered your child please click the link below. 

During term time, the following groups operate at our 10.30 service:

Ripples
Age: Pre-school and Reception children (3-5 years)
Where: Loft Room l  Leader: Becky Onslow
Streams
Age: Years 1 & 2 children (age 5-7yrs)
Where: Upper Room l  Leader: Becky Onslow
Waves
Age: Years 3 & 4 children (age 7-9 yrs)
Where: North Room l  Leader: Rachel Tunnicliffe
Oceans
Age: Years 5 & 6 children (age 9-11 yrs)
Where: Rose Room l  Leader: Lizzy Stansfield

Our vision is –

To let children know they are loved by God and are precious to Him; to let them know that Jesus offers each one of them a friendship like no other; to help them build relationships and community with their age-group peers, with other children and young people, and with their leaders; to help them play their part in the whole Church family where together we are a family of servants on mission. 

Why children and water?

The imagery of water is used a lot in the Bible and Jesus says that whoever believes in Him, streams of life giving water will pour out from their heart. He says, “Whoever is thirsty should come to me and drink” (John 7). By naming our groups in this way we want to encourage every child who comes to St Mark’s that they are part of God’s big family, loved by Him and empowered by His Spirit to play a role in helping to build His kingdom. 

Here are three reasons why water is wonderful…

Water – it gives us life! We need water every day to keep us alive, we drink it from the tap, from a bottle, and it refreshes us. Just like water, Jesus also gives us life and everything we need every day. We can talk to Him and trust that he will always love us, forgive us and guide us. 
Water – it moves! The tide is dynamic: ripples, streams, waves and oceans all move and have an effect on what’s around them. Our living faith is dynamic too. As disciples of all ages, we too have been given a mission by God to love one another, help others and tell people about him.
Water – it washes us clean! We are all imperfect and get things wrong, but Jesus always forgives us and gives us a fresh start. As part of God’s big family we learn together how Jesus guides us through difficult times and how we can help, support and forgive each other. 

We encourage you to meet our leaders who will be happy to answer any questions you may have.  Please speak to one of our 10.30am welcomers before the service who will be happy to introduce you to one of the children and young people’s team leaders or you can contact one of our children’s ministry team by email below: 

The nature of this ministry means Children’s leaders and helpers should develop strong and trusted relationships with the children. As a result of this trust all leaders and helpers may be seen as confidants by the children. Children may want to share with these people details of their life. It is important that all leaders and helpers know, understand and follow the parish policies relating to child protection and safeguarding. These can be obtained from the Church website or from the church office.

This church recognises and values children and young people (anyone under the age of 18) as equal partners in the life and ministry of the church, and desires to encourage them to explore, discover and grow as disciples. The Parochial Church Council (PCC) takes seriously its obligations and responsibilities to protect and safeguard the welfare of any child or young person (i.e. under the age of 18 years) entrusted to the church’s care.

Therefore in the church’s provision and ministry, the PCC 

Will ensure that both employed and volunteer children’s and youth workers and all other persons working within the church who may have contact with children or young people through this work are properly and appropriately selected and appointed as set out in the Diocese of West Yorkshire and the Dales Safeguarding policy.

Will actively seek to protect and safeguard the physical, emotional and spiritual welfare of children and young people while in the care of the church.

Accepts responsibility for the activities of the children’s and youth groups operating under its auspices.

Leaders and helpers should all know, understand and follow the parish policies relating to child protection and safeguarding. These are available from the Office or on the church website.

Will have clear procedures for responding to suspicions or allegations about abuse, or inappropriate behaviours towards children and young people by any member of the church, and procedures for working with known offenders attending the church.

Using the cause for concern form available from the Church Office or church website to report any safeguarding concerns relating to children. (see example overleaf)

Will require all leaders and helpers to operate within its guidelines.

Attending safeguarding training at church at least every 5 years

Will ensure that children’s/youth workers and volunteers are given adequate support and training.

Will annually appoint a Parish Child Protection Representative.

Will annually review the Parish Safeguarding Policy and procedures.

Will maintain appropriate Third Party Liability insurance for the church work among children and young people.