Children’s Music & Ministries Updates

Here is a quick overview of what’s coming up for Children’s Music & Ministries. Stay tuned for more info coming soon on Youth Groups! Hope to see everyone on Sunday, 9/8!

Kick off on Sunday, Sept. 8th.
Grades Prek-5.
Nursery for children age 3 and under.

First rehearsal is in the Choir Room on Sunday, Sept. 8th.
Young singers age 4 through 8 are welcome to sing with us. Cherubs sing in church approx. one time per month and participate in the Christmas Pageant and Musical!


First rehearsal is Wednesday, Sept. 11th. Grades 3-12.
Youth interested in performing at St. John’s are welcome to join us to sing in church approx. one time per month and participate in the Christmas Pageant and Musical.

Dec. 22 Christmas Pageant, 10:00AM (Dress Rehearsal 12/21, 10:00-12:00)
Feb. 15-16 Musical Performances (Dress Rehearsal 2/14, 4:00-6:00)
Apr. 26 The Choir School Culmination Concert w/ Phillips Andover Academy 4:00PM


An after-school music program on Tuesdays & Thursdays from 3:15-5:15.
First rehearsal is Tuesday, Sept. 17th.
A tuition-free after-school music program focused on singing, musicianship, and community. Open to all treble voices in grades 3-8. Students perform about once per month, participate in special services, and collaborate with other ensembles.

Young families are invited to hang out together, share food and drink, and watch the children entertain eachother. It has become a highlight for we parents who need to remember to laugh together and bask in the love and light of our children… while sipping a glass of wine with other adults! Low-pressure, come as you are, and do family night right. If you’ve never made it, this is the year! Stay tuned for dates and info!


Mass on the Grass & Sunday School

This Sunday we celebrate on the lawn of the Warner House! (The Warner House is right next door to St. John’s, so all the parking and basics of transportation stay the same! If there’s any rain we will move back into the church.) If you’ve never experienced Mass on the Grass, it is one of our end-of-summer traditions. Think flowers, open air, guitars, and simple worship. The service begins at 9:30. 

Kari has offered to host a young children’s Sunday school class (preK-1st or 2nd graders will likely be happy there) beginning at 9:15, and our nursery will also be open!

Kickoff Sunday is just two weeks away!


Reflection on Raising Kids

Your Children Are Not Your Children

A daily devotional by Molly Baskette and Ellen O’Donnell on July 31, 2019.

Train children in the right way, and when old, they will not stray. – Proverbs 22:6 (NRSV)


The poet Kahlil Gibran said, “your children are not your children…you may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.”

Easy for him to say—Gibran himself was childless. But he makes a fair point. Child development research underscores the power of temperament, or what we like to call nature, the idea that each child is born fully a person already: cranky, happy, confident, anxious, mellow, intense, introvert, extrovert. Nurture can shift and shape nature but attempts to change it fundamentally tend to go awry.

Proverbs says parents should “train their child in the right way.” This probably doesn’t mean making our children over in our image, projections of our unmet needs or unfulfilled dreams. Try instead: getting to know the child God has gifted you—their “grain,” as if they arrived an uncarved block of wood that Life will gradually reveal. We are a tool in the hand of the Divine, working with that grain to help them become who God intends them to be. Going against the grain wrecks the wood and frustrates the Carpenter.

This is good news: you can’t take all the blame if they turn out to be biters, boasters, or voters loyal to the other political party.

This is also bad news: it means you have limited control over who and how your child will be. You’re there to love your children, support them, set an example, and curb their worst impulses, but you can’t “make” them. That part’s already done. They are their own people, on their own path. Or is that also good news?


God, help me to get to know and love my child in all their fullness, as You made them, and as they are becoming.

Family Pool Party Sunday 7/14

pool party

Happy July in NH!

The best days of summer are upon us and we would love to share in the fun with you and your family. Children of all ages are welcome… please come and splash around and hang out.

Host: Rhonda, Dave, and Lauren Young

Date & Time: Sunday, July 14 from 12-4 PM

Address: 470 Cutts Ave., Portsmouth NH

RSVP here!

Rhonda and Dave will supply hotdogs and hamburgers, as well as non-alcoholic beverages for the party. Please bring something to share (an appetizer, a dessert, a snack, a bottle of wine, something else for the grill…) as well as your beach towels and bathing suits! If you need to get in touch with Rhonda, her number is 693-682-1392.

Serve and Celebrate!

All St. John’s Youth are invited for an afternoon of service, song, and fellowship starting at 3:00pm. Here’s the schedule for tomorrow:

3:00pm – Cooking for Cross Roads – we’ll prepare a meal to send to the Cross Roads shelter.
4:00pm – Youth Choirs rehearse – youth singers will practice for an hour while others finish preparing the meal.
5:00pm – Dinner
5:30pm – 6:00pm – pick-up

Cooking for Crossroads
Kids & volunteers cooking for Crossroads

All are welcome to join when they can for as long as they can.


May 11th Family Night

Hi SJC Families,

What a wonderful school year we’ve had as a St John’s family. As our program year comes to a close, we wanted to gather our families one more time before heading into “summer schedule.” Here are the details:

When: Saturday, May 11

Time: 4pm-whenever

The Haight’s House
7 Newington Road
Greenland, NH

Bring: an appetizer, a side dish, or drinks – click here to sign up

Dinner: we will have hot dogs, hamburgers, bratwurst, etc. for the grill

What: We will also have a campfire and s’mores for the kids. Dress for outdoor play!

Palm Sunday

palm sunday
Palm Sunday by Evans Yegon

Children & Youth will meet at 9:30 in the normal locations. At 10:00, all children and youth will join the processional in church to help bless and distribute palms to the congregation. This is an exciting entrance, and we are joyfully anticipating the kids’ involvement. It may cause a little extra chaos, but parents should know that we will still run on the same schedule:

  • 9:30AM Kids’ gather for Sunday school/Youth group
  • 10:00AM Kids’ join processional, then return to small group spaces with adult leaders
  • 10:40AM (approx) Kids’ return to their families at the time of the Peace
  • 11:00-11:30AM Cherub choir rehearses in Choir Room

PLEASE NOTE: There will not be a service Sunday this week as previously planned. All youth should go to their normal Sunday meeting place.

**Choir School students are called to gather for robes at 9:15!**

Wed. April 10 UPDATE

Tomorrow, Wednesday April 10th, we will host youth for:

  • Cooking for Crossroads at 3:00-5:00
  • Junior Choir at 4:30-5:30

All those in the choir are encouraged to join the cooking crew in the kitchen until we begin a shorter rehearsal at 4:30.

There will not be any fellowship time or dinner served this time, so please plan your pick-ups accordingly! 

Thank you so much!


April 2019

Overview for April 2019:

Nursery & Sunday School/Youth Group will run normally all Sundays EXCEPT Easter

Easter Sunday, April 21

  • Nursery is open for first service 8:45AM – 10:45AM
  • No Sunday School
  • Easter Egg Hunt immediately following first service (approx. 10:15)

Youth choirs sing at BOTH 9:15 & 11:00 Easter services!!

Don’t miss the Choir School students singing on Palm Sunday, April 14!