Kids & Students

A Place for the Next Generation

Our mission is “Joining Children on their Spiritual Journey.” The purpose of KidStep is to intentionally focus on ways that we can help children from birth through fifth grade take next steps of faith.


We welcome your children at 9 and 10:30 AM to an environment that is kid-safe, kid-friendly, and kid-focused. Our vision is to equip volunteers and empower parents to lead the next generation to live and love like Jesus as they take next steps of faith. Each Sunday our volunteers love and care for your children, while building relationships with them through age-appropriate worship, creative Bible teaching, and small groups. For the safety of the children, we have a check-in system that uses parent pick-up tags. Look for our Kids’ Check-In Stations on Sunday mornings to receive your child’s nametags and your parent pick-up tag.


We are excited to join your children on their spiritual journey at KidStep!

Support for those with special needs. Our special needs ministry is designed to support families and make sure you can come to church and worship together. Our KidStep Ministry (birth to 5th grade) has a specially designed sensory room as well as offering a "buddy" to attend Sunday School classes with your child. If your child needs support, click here to let us know.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Click here for the latest newsletter for KidStep Children's Ministry.

March

45 Overnight | March 22-23 | 7 PM to 8 AM

Fourth- and fifth-graders and their friends are welcome to join us for our annual 45 Overnight. This overnight at the church is designed as a fun and safe place for kids to hang out with their friends and play games, as well as acting as a stepping stone for CORE Middle School Retreats. Registration is required for this event and can be found here. Please register your kids by Wednesday, March 20.

April

Easter Experience Family Hours | Saturday, April 13—1 to 4 PM | Saturday, April 20—10 AM to 12 PM

The entire church has been going through Mark together, and the Easter Experience is an interactive walkthrough journey where you can encounter Jesus in a different way as you travel through the highlights of this book. While families are invited to walk through the Easter Experience at any time when it is open during the week, there will be designated family times on Saturday, April 13 from 1 to 4 PM and Saturday, April 20 from 10 AM to 12 PM for families who are concerned about their younger ones using quieter voices when others are walking through.


Easter Gatherings

Good Friday | Friday, April 19—7 PM

Easter Services | Saturday, April 20—7 PM | Sunday, April 21—8, 9, & 10:30 AM

Families are encouraged to worship together on Easter weekend. The only children's ministry programming for the weekend will be for nursery and preschool at 9 and 10:30 AM on Sunday, April 21. During the other service times, the nursery will remain unlocked for families with young ones who need a break.


Child Dedication Class | Sunday, April 28 | 10:30 AM | Room 301

The actual Child Dedication days will be May 12 (Mother's Day) and June 16 (Father's Day). If you are interested in Child Dedication, register here for the class.

May

Preparing for Adolescence | May 5 | 9 & 10:30 AM

On May 5 we will be having our Preparing for Adolescence classes at both 9 AM (room 303) and 10:30 AM (room 301). Parents of fifth grade students are encouraged to join Deb Hinkel (Director for Spiritual Formation and Family Ministry) and Katie Searfoss (Director for Children's Ministries) during one of these times to talk about adolescence, crucial conversations with your preteens, and what the fifth graders are discussing that day in their classes regarding this topic. This will also be a time to share what CORE will look like next year as preteens promote to Student Ministry.

June

KREW | June 10 to 14 | 6 to 8:30 PM

For those of you who grew up loving VBS or whose kids have enjoyed Hershey Free's preschool and elementary camps, be sure to save the date for KidStep's Really Exciting Week (KREW). KREW is designed for three-year-olds through students who have completed fifth grade to come learn more about who Jesus is through stories, games, crafts, music, and a whole lot of fun! This year's KREW theme is "Dive In"—a week focused on "going deeper" with Jesus.

CORE is a place for high school and middle school students to connect with one another, with older mentors, and with Jesus. Our desire is to help students become disciple-makers and to walk alongside both them and their parents in their faith journeys.


We meet on Sundays at 10:30 AM, with high school students in the Core Cafe and middle school in the auditorium. On Wednesdays during the school year, we meet at 6:45 PM. Both Sunday and Wednesday meeting times have a blend of games, community, small and large group teaching, and discipleship. 

Support for those with special needs. Our special needs ministry is designed to support families and make sure you can come to church and worship together. Our CORE Ministry (6th to 12th grade) has a specially designed sensory room. Our goal is to come alongside your family and be a support to you. CORE meets at 10:30 AM only. If your child needs support, click here to let us know.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Click here for the latest newsletter for CORE Student Ministries.

March

No CORE | Wednesday, March 27 | Brunch Training 6-8 PM


CORE Brunch | Sunday, March 31

We will invite the entire church to purchase brunch items and support the students going on mission trips this summer. We're asking all students to help with the brunch, especially each student who is going on a trip (Haiti, Niagara Falls, or Downey). There will be two shifts on March 31; sign up here for your preferred shift. We have brunch training on Wednesday, March 27 from 6 to 8 PM and Saturday, March 30 from 8 AM to noon. Both trainings are required; if for some reason you cannot attend one, please contact Kamda Swigart.

April

No CORE | Wednesday, April 17 and Sunday, April 21 | Happy Easter!

June

Niagara Falls Middle School Mission Trip | June 16-21 | Serving with YouthWorks

For students currently in grades 6 to 8.

Registration

Application

July

Haiti High School Mission Trip | July 6-12 | Serving with ReachGlobal

Find additional information and meeting dates here. The application deadline has passed. Click here to donate toward this team's expenses.


High School Mission Trip to Downey | July 17-21 | Staying at Bethesda in Harrisburg

CORE students will provide a VBS experience for Downey Elementary students. Click here for more information. Early-bird registration is due March 17 and includes an applicationregistration, and a parent reference.