Middle & High School Youth


Messiah Church is commited to the overall development of faith lives. We believe that faith formation needs to incorporate content, community, and service. The Pre-confirmation (5th and 6th grades) Confirmation (6th – 8th grades) and Youth High School evenings are facilitated by the Youth and Family Ministry Coordinator Teresa Palumbo youth@messiahchurch.com as well as the pastor and other adult mentors.

 
YOW & Confirmation Information for 2020-2021

We know that many families and children want to continue learning about their faith with others and that the Sunday School and YOW (Youth on Wednesday) programs are a big part of that journey. It was difficult for all of us when we had to call an abrupt halt to these programs in March, perhaps especially for our children and youth who were preparing for First Communion and Confirmation.

Pastor Jeff, Teresa Palumbo (YOW) and Elizabeth Crummy (Sunday School) are formulating plans which will allow these programs to continue in some capacity, while simultaneously honoring the need to continue to stay physically distant until it is safe to once again be together.

 Confirmation Update

We developed an option for youth and families to participate in an in-person outdoor abbreviated confirmation ceremony on Saturday, October 3 at 10:00 a.m. This is optional. Youth and their families should only participate if they feel comfortable. If your family would prefer an alternate option, please let me know and we can explore possibilities. Listed below are details about the tentative plans to help you make your decision.

Masks. Per the current state-wide mandate, masks are required and will be worn at all times with the exception of communion. Red mask will be provided for each confirmation student.

Location: Lower parking lot. Families would gather at assigned spots in the lower parking lot that are appropriately distanced from other families. Confirmation students would line up near the bridge in alphabetical order and be spaced 6 feet apart to walk in as a group and cross the bridge. They would then join their families where they would remain for the remainder of the ceremony.

Ceremony: Some of the symbols of confirmation include the affirmation of baptism, anointing of oil and the laying on of hands. We will incorporate these elements in ways that are safe and maintain physical distancing. For example, youth would be with their families for the laying on of hands. Youth would receive a cross rather than have one placed on them. Families would distribute communion within their family group. We may also incorporate the youth lighting a baptismal candle one at a time. Again, every attention will be given to maintain appropriate physical distance and sanitary/safety procedures.

Robes: Youth will be provided with white robes. Please let me know the height and weight of your child so that I can order a robe for them to wear. Robes will be available for pick-up the Friday before the event between 4-6:00 p.m. at Messiah or you can just grab the robe the day of the event.

Cost: The cost to rent the robes is $30. Scholarships are available upon request. Please make checks payable to Messiah Lutheran Church and remit wihen picking up the robe or on the day of the ceremony.

Video: We will be recording the ceremony to share with the Messiah community as part of one of the weekly worship broadcasts. The confirmation ceremony will most likely air the weekend of October 17,

Families in Attendance: As we try to limit the number of people in attendance, only family members within your immediate household are allowed. Please encourage other family and friends to watch the broadcast.

Statement of Faith: Each confirmation student is asked to write a brief statement that reflects upon someone who has made an impact on their faith and.or faith journey, or a reflection on why their faith is important to them or how it impacts them. The statements can be just several sentences. This takes the place of the project and interview that would have traditionally been a part of the confirmation process. I am happy to work with the youth on these or provide more details. Just let me know if they need help.

Again, these are just some tentative details/plans to help you decide if you will participate on October 3. The ceremony will be brief.

Please let Teresa know as soon as possible if your family is likely to participate and if so, please also send me your child's height and weight for their robe. Teresa Palumbo, tnpalumbo@yahoo.com

YOW and Sunday School this Fall

Sunday School and YOW families should watch for information about what those programs will look like in 2020-2021. We are still working out the details, looking into resources and finding out the availability of our volunteers.

  • The general idea is that we would begin the year offering remote programming twice a month starting in October. It will most likely be live for YOW and recorded for Sunday School.
  • All the supplies your family will need will be provided each month and attention will be paid to how much adult involvement and facilitation is needed (with the understanding that in all things, the younger your children are, the more support they will need.)
  • We want to reduce the burden on adults to obtain supplies and become instructors as we know you are already doing a lot of that with school.
  • Our goal will be to return to in person programming as soon as we return to a full worship schedule in the church.

Our programs will be meeting less frequently and remotely so our costs will go down in some ways. At the same time, there will be some unusual expenses such as more pre-printed materials and supplies that we send home. There are no set registration fees this year, but any donations will help in covering these costs. Please register ASAP so we know how many materials we should have ready.

We appreciate your patience as we continue to plan. Please check your email, weekly e-news and Facebook for updates.  For more information contact Teresa Palumbo at youthministry@messiahchurch.com.

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    I. CONTENT:

    Pre-confirmation and Confirmation are intended to be experiential learning processes, Using web based materials, evenings begin with a large group gathering using multi-media. The events are, scripturally rooted, and explored in depth throughout the year. The confirmation evenings are designed to help the middle school/high school students delve ever more deeply into:

    • the biblical foundations of faith
    • the history of the Christian Church
    • our Lutheran understanding of ministry and life
    • the liturgical symbols that inform our faith
    • the moral demands of belief in Jesus
    • reflection on the place of faith in their lives

     

    II. COMMUNITY:

    Becoming a person of faith is done within the context of the community. We believe that community building is essential to becoming disciples. The Confirmation process strives to build community through fun gatherings as well as instruction. Whether we are beginning the year with an old fashioned Tailgate party or heading out to Culvers for an ice cream Sundae, we are striving to become a community of faith.


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    III. FAITH IN ACTION:

    We believe at Messiah Church that faith formation must be experiential and that all formation must take place in the context of outreach. The Confirmation class has many oportunities throughout the three year process to put their faith into action. Here are some of the activities that the Confirmation youth have participated in:

    • Crop Walk for Hunger Awareness
    • Planning, Preparing and serving the Homeless Meal at the Madison Men’s Shelter
    • Volunteering at the Animal Shelter
    • Sorting donated items at St. Vincent de Paul
    • Collecting goods for Domestic Abuse Intervention Services
    • Raking leaves for the homebound
    • Volunteering as Sunday School mentor or teacher’s aid
    • Working as communion assistants, readers or acolytes
    • Participating on our yearly Youth Mission Trip

     

    These along with many other outreach activities help to form our Confirmation students into the people of faith that will make a difference in our church, our city and in our world.

    THE HIGH SCHOOL youth gather for breakfasts each month, outings for fellowship and outreach and participate in Mission Trips each summer to various sites through Youth Works https://www.youthworks.com/. Teresa Palumbo uses Social media to communicate with all our young people, including a closed Facebook page, texts and email list to keep the parents informed.

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