Programs for Children and Youth

Faith Formation for Children and Youth

Have questions about our programs for children and youth? Contact Deb Kelliher, Director of Family and Faith Formation, at

Our nursery is open every Sunday at 10:00 A.M. for infants and children up to age 3. It is staffed year-round by a dedicated team of childcare providers. The room is located on our lower level near the dining hall.

Atrium (Ages 3- 1st grade)
Our Atrium program for children ages 3 to 1st grade meets on Sundays, September through May, at 10:00 a.m. Atrium is a Montessori based curriculum called Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. Through presentations from our trained leaders, our children explore their own relationship with God and learn hands on about the traditions, liturgies, and sacraments of the church. They join us in church at Communion time. The Atrium room is located on the lower level near the dining hall. Someone will be available in the main Lounge area (enter the red doors on Prospect) to welcome you on Sunday mornings and help you find the Atrium.

Elementary School (Grades 2-5) 
Children in grades 2-5 meet on special Sundays during the school year (typically once per month), for presentations called Family Faith Forums. Designed specifically with elementary age children in mind, but intended to be inter-generational, these interactive presentations help us explore our faith in relationship to the stories of Scripture, the feast days of the church, and Christian spiritual traditions. We meet in the Grauer Lounge at 9:45a.m. and then attend the 10:15a.m. service.

On all other Sundays, children are encouraged to worship with us in church.  Children will also participate in our worship services through special offerings, songs, and presentations. Craft and coloring bags are available for those children in the back of the church.

Family Faith Forums
  And a voice from heaven said:

"This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.”
Matthew 3: 17

Sunday, January 8th, we will celebrate the Baptism of our Lord Jesus and an Epiphany tradition.

 In church that morning we will recite our own Baptismal vows from the Book of Common Prayer. But before that, join us at our Family Faith Forum in the Grauer Lounge at 9:45 am. Revisit the story of John the Baptist and his parents, Elizabeth and Zechariah, from the book of Luke. Hear the connection between Elizabeth and Mary and their babies to be. We will reflect on the day Jesus was baptized and what that means for us as a community. While this Family Faith Forum is geared toward our elementary age children, we welcome all to join us.

After our presentation, we will move into the bell tower area and “chalk” the stone entrance. This ancient practice is done at Epiphany and the beginning of the new year.  There will be a short prayer, the writing of 20+C+M+B+23, and blessed bags that you can take to chalk your own home.

Youth Group (Middle and High School)
Our Middle and High School age youth meet on the second Sunday of each month from September to May. This takes place after church until 12:30 p.m. and is in the room located above the church offices. Our St Mary’s youth group also participates in community wide youth events in collaboration with partner churches in Park Ridge.

Return to Faith Formation.