The following are common questions we hear in Mars Hill Kids. If you have a question and find that it’s not addressed here or on our other Kids pages, or if you’d like to request additional information, we invite you to contact us or stop by one of our Kids Welcoming Centers on a Sunday.
Our ability to grow together as a church stems from what we hold central—Jesus and our commitment to the biblical narrative. By the grace of God, this story becomes our story and we perpetuate it by the power of the Holy Spirit, as we serve our local and global community, and invite others to participate in this pursuit of Jesus together. Demonstrating a harmony of both orthodoxy [right thinking] and orthopraxy [right living/practice], our Narrative Theology seeks to not only guide our thoughts and minds, but the way we live our lives. [Essentially, we teach a kid-friendly version of the Mars Hill Narrative Theology.
Mars Hill Kids meets during most Mars Hill Gatherings on Sundays. Throughout the school year, we gather from 10-11:25am in the Kids hallway [off of the North Hallway] in Grandville and from 5-6:25pm in Grand Rapids. Our Kids volunteers are present and our areas open 15 minutes prior to each Gathering.
We seek to provide consistent, age-appropriate, and theologically sound programming that gives opportunities for kids to learn the biblical story with their peers and under the guidance of a dedicated and approved staff and volunteer team. Our current programming reflects our online Kids Gathering while offering additional activities for children to engage in.
We implement check-in and check-out procedures, including a parent/child matching sticker tag, that prevents any child from being removed from the Kids areas by any person other than an adult with a security tag. Background screenings and interviews are also required for all staff and volunteers serving in Mars Hill Kids. Ratios and maximum child capacities are strictly enforced to ensure that we are able to provide a safe and secure environment for all of our ministry participants. Masks are strictly enforced at all times. Classrooms are cleaned after each Gathering.
For the safety of our children, it is important that your child wears their sticker on their shirt at all times. Adults will need to have the security tag that is printed at check-in to pick up their child. Name tags help volunteers get to know your child and the security code that is printed on the sticker ensures that your child remains safe.
At this time, parents are not allowed to stay in classrooms for safety reasons, however, if you would like to participate with your child, you are welcome to become a volunteer.
To maintain a safe and positive learning environment, we seek to ensure industry standard, child/leader ratios.
Programming for MHK is in the main hallway in Grandville. After checking in at one of the kiosks, 4 year olds - 5th grade students are invited to join you in the Shed for the first part of the Gathering. They will then be dismissed to the Kids hallway. Our infants - 3 year olds will go directly to their classroom after checking in before worship.
At our Grand Rapids location, kids will check-in at the kiosk outside the sanctuary. Infants - 2 year olds can go upstairs to nursery. Kids 3 years old - 5th grade will join their parents in the sanctuary for the first part of the Gathering. They will then be dismissed with our MHK team who will walk with them to the fellowship room downstairs.
If our staff and volunteers determine that a child needs to be picked up early, we will send a text message to your cell phone. Please make sure you have your phone handy during the gathering. As a backup, we will display the last 4 digits of your cell phone number on the red screen at the top of various pillars in the Shed.
Mars Hill recognizes the deep and meaningful traditions of both child dedication and infant baptism. Based on our own tradition and ministry structure, we generally encourage parents to dedicate their children with the intention of seeing them baptized when they sense they are ready to publicly make a profession of faith. Opportunities for child dedications are offered regularly throughout the year. Also, the Mars Hill staff is always available to talk with you should you have specific questions or needs pertaining to dedication or baptism. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Yes! Child dedication is available to any parent or guardian who wishes to declare their intent to raise a child to know Jesus as the only hope for bringing reconciliation between God and humanity. Although most often it is infants who are dedicated, dedication can be done for older children as well.
There is no age requirement for baptism at Mars Hill; however, we encourage children and their parents to understand what baptism means and what they are choosing to declare by participating in it. Classes on baptism are offered regularly to help children and adults understand what baptism is and to discern whether they are ready to participate in it.
Mars Hill practices communion in the Shed on a regular basis. We practice an open table where all are welcome. We trust parents to discern whether their child is ready to take communion.