Newcastle Youth 'Coming of Age' Ceremony
4th October 2018
After months of hard work and rehearsals, the children at Newcastle Seventh-day Adventist church celebrated the importance of the 'Coming of Age' for 4-5-year-olds and 11-12-year-olds. Everyone involved from the church leaders and the Children's Ministries team including the children themselves, worked incredibly hard, to put together a ceremony to make each child that 'came of age' feel special and of importance.
Under the theme, 'The Potter's Hand', the event happened over the weekend of 28-30 September. The first segment, Friday night, was a time for each child to enjoy clay moulding activities with their parent/carer and enjoy part one of Pastor Patricia Douglas' short sermon series, who serves the North England Conference as the Children's Ministries director.
Day two was the main event that took place on Sabbath. The day was filled with performances, prayer, music, Scripture readings; the second 'Potter's Hand' sermon challenged even young children to make decisions in their life about God.
Eventually the 'Coming of Age' ceremony took place ‒ books and certificates awarded to the children who had come of age. The afternoon closed with more interactive crafts and the third presentation of the 'Potter's Hand' sermon.
Sunday found many children and adults enjoying the final instalment of the programme. Worship included the final 'Potter's Hand' sermon, excellent worship and then a banquet for all the participants to enjoy after all the hard work that had been put into the weekend programme.
As the majority may know, it is important to give glory to God when these important milestones happen in life. Simply taking time to appreciate how God is shaping children to be wise, God-fearing, intelligent young people, who with the guidance from the Holy Spirit, will have a positive influence on others.
Pastor Douglas says, "The greatest preparation for the future ahead is discipling children and young people to help them to see the importance God has toward them as children. Discipleship means teaching children how to enjoy Bible study and prayer so that these become a part of everyday life. Society and the outside world will draw them away. We should make time for children at home and in the church and God will give them a firm foundation."The impact that these events have on the children is of vital importance in helping them perceive themselves healthily. Lwandile Ndlovu said she felt 'Coming of Age' was great because, "I'm feeling like a big person now." It's a time for the children to be told that they're going to grow up to be great young people. "Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV)
From every song to every scripture reading, the children couldn't have had a better production team to guide them. The message was truly inspired by God and toward the end of the programme Pastor Douglas said, "More churches should conduct this service, every church and for every child." She continued, "I'd like to congratulate all the young people involved and the amazing team who put this programme together, it was truly wonderful to see every piece put together so nicely. A true blessing from God."