Children's Liturgy of the Word
This ministry seeks to foster an opportunity for the children of our assembly to hear God's Word on a level and in a manner they can better grasp than in the adult assembly. The children are dismissed and gather in a separate space to hear the scriptures proclaimed, sing a psalm, pray the Apostles Creed and offer the intercessions of their lives in prayer. How do I know if my child is old enough or mature enough to participate?
The age range for CLoW is 4 to 10 for our community. Consider the following items developed from the experience of the CLoW ministers who have worked with the children over the past few years.
How does my child participate?
|1. ||A child must be able to control his or her bladder for at least 30 minutes (in case they are newly potty trained).|
|2. ||A child should be able to sit in a group with reasonable focus and quietness for 30 minutes.|
|3. ||A child should be able to follow basic instructions, such as: please sit, line up here, etc.|
|4. ||A child must be able to separate from their parents for the half-hour period without too much coaxing or needing singular attention.|
|5. ||For older children, it would be nice if they could answer questions about the readings they have just heard so that a dialogue can be created.|
All children must sign in and have a name tag prior to the beginning of Mass. The CLoW ministers need to know who is in the room with them in case there is a need to contact parents. During the Opening Rites of the Liturgy, the children will be called forward for dismissal. After a brief prayer they process to the room where the Liturgy of the Word is celebrated with them. They return to the main assembly at the Preparation of the Gifts.
You can help your child feel comfortable with CLoW and obtain the greatest benefit by reinforcing the following items:
Is there any program fee or cost for a child to participate in CLoW?
|Explain to your children that they will hear the same Bible stories as you and participate in prayer and worship.|
|Have them use the bathroom before Mass begins.|
|Encourage them to walk slowly, not to run or skip and to follow the directions of the CLoW ministers at all times. |
|Let them know the leaders will return them to you after the intercessions, during the offertory. |
|They will be given envelopes to make a donation and/or write something they have done recently that brought them closer to Jesus, which will be added to the collection. This helps them grow in an understanding of stewardship of time, talent and treasure.|
|Their good deeds will be published weekly in the bulletin. |
|Save your discussion of their experience until after Mass so that all understand the importance of the liturgy in its entirety. |
There are no fees or costs for children to participate in CLoW. There are envelopes available for children to use for a monetary offering and to say how they have shown their love of God and neighbor that week. Sometimes my children have friends stay over or friends visit from out of town. May they participate in CLoW?
Yes, they are most welcome. It would be good to introduce them at the sign-in table as visitors so the CLoW ministers are aware of this. This helps the children gain an understanding of the stewardship and sacrificial giving the Gospel calls us to practice. May I attend Children's Liturgy for the Word with my child?
A parent may bring a child to CLoW the first few times. After the third visit, if a child is unable to process with the other children or remain unless with a parent, then it is likely that he or she is not yet ready to participate in CLoW.