Children Central to Christmas Ministries

Children Central to Christmas Ministries

by the Rev. Matt Warren, Vicar, Christ the King, Quincy

Christ the King Episcopal Church in Quincy is once again making sure that children are the focus of several programs during this Christmas season.

The Church hosted a special “Children’s Church” service this past Sunday in which St. Nicholas brought a message of generosity and kindness to children of all ages. The Rev. Matt Warren, Vicar of Christ the King, Quincy, introduced the “spiritual heir” of St. Nicholas by briefly telling the story of the historical Nicholas, who was a Bishop in Myrna (in modern day Turkey), and shared why he is so closely associated with the Christmas Season and our modern Santa Claus.

“I think that people assume that St. Nicholas is made up,” Father Warren taught, “but Nicholas was a real person who served the church at a vital time in its early history. He is even recorded as getting into a fist-fight with another bishop at the Council of Nicea!” Guy McNett, the parishioner who embodied St. Nicholas during the service, shared a popular story attributed to the historical Nicholas of providing a dowry for three sisters. “These three sisters needed some money to help start a family, and I’m a very good shot…so late at night, I snuck across town and carefully tossed a small bag of gold into each of their socks, which were drying by the fireplace. It turns out, everyone likes to find small gifts in their stockings, and so I’ve been doing it ever since!” McNett taught those in attendance.

The special visit by St. Nicholas was also a part of a special Children’s Church service, which was designed specifically for young children. “It is based off of our Family Church model, which is starting to gather a lot of steam,” Warren shared proudly. “Church can’t be a one-size fits all kind of place. Family and Children’s Church are an important way to engage young ones, but we are also trying to vary our worship to engage adults, whose learning styles, in many ways, are far more diverse than children’s. We have to retain the central message of our faith, while at the same time trying to make it as accessible as possible to a community with different interests and learning styles,” explained Warren.

Yet, tailoring a service for children is just one way in which Christ the King, Quincy is trying to serve children this Christmas season. This year will see the return of the parish’s “No Forgotten Angels” outreach program. Similar to last year, Christ the King will be partnering with Plumas Crisis and Intervention Resource Center’s (PCIRC) to support their Angel Tree project, by adopting all of the unclaimed angels to provide warmth items and presents for children in need. “It is important to remember that our community has never forgotten any of the children who have been a part of this program. There have always been incredibly generous people who have given tremendous amounts of time and money to make sure that every child in the project receives some sort of gift. We just wanted to codify the practice,” said Warren.

In addition to its own fundraising efforts, volunteers from Christ the King solicited donations at this year’s Sparkle in Downtown Quincy. “Both last year and so far this year, we have seen a tremendous response,” exclaimed Warren. “This ministry strikes a chord with a lot of community members, and we were both honored and touched to receive some very generous offers from members and non-members, alike.”

If you are interested in making a donation to the “No Forgotten Angels” project, please contact Christ the King, Quincy by phone at 530-283-0254 or visit the parish’s Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/ChristTheKingQuincy.

 

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