Calvary Episcopal Church
Children & Youth Ministries Newsletter
October, 2020
What crazy times we have lived through these past several months! I hope that everyone has been managing with the coronavirus pandemic, shortages on toilet paper and basic food items, travel restrictions, working remotely from home or risking one’s health as essential workers (or even losing a job), child care demands and online classes, worrying about our elderly relatives, political divisiveness and social unrest on the streets and in social media, natural disasters, cancellations of beloved events, limited access to sports and entertainment venues, and everyday personal dramas.

It’s been a tumultuous ride, and God help us all, we’ve landed in October, but we’re still
facing some major bumps ahead. It’s been hard to feel like a church family while we’ve been socially distancing and following the safety precautions of our governor, bishop, and health experts. Yet with the beauty of fall coloring the world around us, I hope we can take a deep breath and dig deep into our faith to teach our kids to appreciate the good in life, look up to heroic role models, be helpers, and share a kind word wherever we can. Just like the jack-o-lanterns at Halloween, we’ve got to let our light shine!

Emily Sityar
CYM Chair
In This Issue

Zoom Sunday School
Upcoming Events
September Children's Sermon
Nursery Care
Halloween Printables
Videotaped Plays & Pageant
CYM Bottle & Can Drive
Diocesan News
Zoom Sunday School

We had a terrific time at our Zoom Sunday School on 9/27 despite some glitches with Zoom controls. It was so good to see more than two dozen children and grownups attending our meeting!! Thanks to all our participants, our art/photo contributors, readers, prayer leaders, and candle keepers. Thanks to Lora Bunting for playing the piano and leading us in song, Fr. Harvey for his Children’s Sermon and blessing of the 4th graders’ bibles, Sue Schroeder and Patty Rooss for helping to plan the session, and Alice Brown for technical guidance. Click here to view the children’s artwork and powerpoint slides praising God for His amazing works of creation.

Based on some helpful feedback, in future meetings, we will allow children to voice their own prayer petitions during the service and also will also add more time at the end for children to chat informally. Another suggestion for improvement was to have everyone on mute when the program begins, except for the speaker, and then at certain times people can unmute themselves to chime in or contribute something. For the singing portions, it may be best if everyone mutes themselves except for the piano and the lead singer. Families can still sing amongst themselves while on mute.

Our next Zoom Sunday School will be on Sunday 10/25 at 10 a.m. Use this Zoom link, or call +1 646 558 8656 and use Meeting ID: 874 4230 2580 and Passcode: 947065. In time for Halloween’s Trick or Treat, our theme for next time is the Golden Rule: “Do Unto Others as you would have them do unto you.” We will send out a link to Sign-Up Genius to recruit participants such as readers, prayer leaders, and candle keepers, etc. Watch for an email about a short optional activity that the kids can do before the Zoom meeting.
Upcoming Events at Calvary

Pet Blessings to Go, Sunday 10/4 from 12:30 - 2 pm
The Feast of St. Francis is Sunday, October 4. While we will not be able to have our usual Blessing of the Animals in honor of St. Francis this year, your pets still are welcome to come for a drive-by blessing from 12:30 - 2 p.m.! “Pet Blessings to Go” will be a touch-free, no contact opportunity for pets of all varieties, stuffed animals, and pictures of pets to receive a blessing in the safety of your car.
September Children’s Sermon

If you missed hearing Fr. Harvey’s Children Sermon, you can find it beginning around 26 minutes into the 17th Sunday after Pentecost, 9/27/20 service, here. Fr. Harvey displayed a beautiful painting by the late parishioner and artist, Jo Bissell, who was the mother of Sunday School teacher, Cinda Stone. He compared an artist’s work of art with God’s work of creation and said that just as an artist signs his/her creation, each one of us is a signature of God because we are all made in His image. God proclaimed that His creation was very good!

The next Children’s Sermon will be live-streamed at the 9am service on October 25, and we will replay a recording of it at our next Zoom Sunday School meeting at 10 a.m.
Nursery Childcare

Hello everyone, 

I hope you are all staying safe and doing well during these crazy times.

Olivia (Livi) and I wanted to let you know that the nursery is open during the 11 a.m. service every Sunday. We are making sure all that all toys are cleaned and sanitized after nursery is over. We require all the children to wear masks, Livi and I have ours on at all times; we also take the temperatures of the children, and ourselves, to ensure that everyone stays healthy. Also, any snacks we provide are in individual packages or you can bring your own for your child.

Livi and I are hoping to welcome more children and are willing to have some older children, up to age 10, be with us so that parents can enjoy the service and start to reconnect with the other Calvary members. If you want your child(ren) to be with us, please indicate that when you register for the service, no later than noon Friday, so that we have an accurate head count. We hope to do some easy crafts that are reflective of the holiday or what is being reviewed on the Sunday School website.

Looking forward to trying to resume some semblance of normalcy for our kids.

In faith and community,
Kelly Blackey and Olivia Fleming
Halloween Printables

Click here for a collection of religious Halloween printables compiled by Bridgit T. Gillis on her blog Pinterest Inspiration. It includes links to free pumpkin coloring sheets and versions of the pumpkin prayer in bookmark or booklet formats. The site uses cookies.
Videotaped Plays & Pageant

CYM is hoping to videotape one or two puppet plays of bible stories to supplement our Zoom Sunday School meetings. If there is enough interest, we are also considering putting together a videotaped Children’s Christmas Pageant, with video clips of children taken at home and compiled into a movie. If you are interested in helping us or if you have any other ideas for videotapes, please contact Sue Schroeder or Emily Sityar.
CYM Bottle & Can Drive

Thanks to all of you who have been bringing their redeemable bottles and cans to The Millersport Recycling Bottle & Can Redemption Center at 803 Millersport Highway and crediting returns to "Calvary Episcopal Church." Unless anyone can suggest an alternate charity, CYM will be donating the Bottle & Can funds to Episcopal Relief and Development’s Disaster Fund to provide relief for the wildfires in California and other western states.
Diocesan News

Weekly Online Sunday School from the Diocesan Partnership of WNY and NW PA
Are you missing weekly Sunday School? Beginning October 3, online formation for children and youth in the partnership dioceses will be available on Saturdays and Sundays via Zoom.
Saturday Offerings (using Shine curriculum)
10 a.m. – Formation for PK – 2nd grade kids
11 a.m. – Formation for 3rd – 6th grade kids
Sunday Offerings
11 a.m. – Children’s Worship
6 p.m., First Sunday – Junior High Youth Group
6 p.m., Second Sunday – Senior High Youth Group
6 p.m., Third Sunday – LGBTQ Discussion and Education (for high-school-aged youth)
Parents and youth can complete an online form to register and receive a link to the Zoom offerings.
Contact Missioner for Youth and Children Wendy Schumacher with questions.
I praise you, Lord, for autumn:
for falling temperatures and morning chill,
trees turned gold and red, brown and orange,
falling leaves and blowing leaves,
the smell of burning leaves,
the joy of leaf-pile jumping.

I praise you, Lord, for autumn:
the interplay of outside temperatures
and inside warmth,
the promise of cider and pumpkin bread,
the blessing of blankets and sweaters.
I praise you, Lord, for autumn:
the beauty and hope in the change of season,
the promise that the coming of autumn
heralds another ending,
a new beginning,
and the wonder of another winter,
another spring,
another summer,
yet to come.

by Bob Hostetler on Guideposts
20 Milton Street, Williamsville, NY 14221