Sunday School for Children at Cape Town Unitarian
You are welcome to bring children to our regular services and they, of course, may sit with adults during the service. On request, we can usually provide someone to supervise a child during the service. We are also in the process of implementing a small room where parents may sit with their very young children to view and hear the service by TV. The other option for children is a Sunday school.
A Sunday School for Children (Chalice Kids)
Acknowledging children’s spiritual capacity reflects our Unitarian belief in freedom of choice. Rather than teaching dogma, we make them aware of things like kindness, love to another, a sense of wonder about the world, and an appreciation of the beauty of nature – aspects and values universal to almost all religions. We tell stories from age-old traditions and contemporary sources and also make them aware of future developments that science may bring. Normally this program, called Chalice Kids, is held on the fourth Sunday of the month from 10:30 to 11:30, although we are planning to have them more often in the future.
Invitation to Chalice Kids
We welcome guests and new members from all faiths and cultures. Children may join in at any time of the school year and attend any number of sessions. Embedded in the Unitarian faith is the notion that every person is on his or her own journey while being in community with others. Therefore we aim to allow every child to develop their own spiritual ideas and lifestyle. See Unitarian Principles for information about the general guidance we provide. No dogma is prescribed. We find content for our teachings from various religious traditions and spiritual resources.
Society often requires of us to identify or associate with a religious institution. For those of us who are more free spirited, this may pose a challenge. By attending Chalice Kids, children have the benefit of belonging to a religious community, yet are free to accumulate spiritual nurturing from various religious traditions as well as science and nature. We offer them a community to belong to.
Creating a Portfolio
Every lesson is followed by a summarized email, written in a way children will be able to follow. Should your child not attend, they can still follow our sessions by subscribing to our email lesson. Throughout the year, every child assembles a portfolio of themed hand-outs and colouring pages, which can then be bound into a personalized ‘Chalice Book’ . It makes a great keepsake. We encourage children to create their own book, reflecting their faith within the broader framework of Unitarian Principles. So doing, we are also truthful to the Unitarian notion of every person’s life being an individual spiritual journey.
Our collection of children’s literature on our Library shelf is growing – some of these books will not be found anywhere else in South Africa.
Liaison with Public or Private Schools
We will gladly assist you in diplomatically maintaining your child’s right to religious freedom at his or her school when you are not comfortable with the program provided in the classroom.
Our Leaders and Presenters
Chalice Kids is chaired and presented by members of the community who have a background in the fields of Theology, Education, Human resources and Psychology – most of whom are parents themselves. If you’d like to convey some of your life’s wisdom, we’ll gladly assist you in presenting a Chalice Kids session.
We have a number of arrangements in place to ensure the physical and emotional safety of your child. All teaching areas are open and lie within the one building. Leaders and regular presenters involved with Chalice Kids are by nature of their professional standing regarded as safe in working with the public. Any other volunteers or co-presenters work under their direct supervision.
A play cupboard of “sacred” objects and symbols is available on the gallery. Here children can give spontaneous expression to their spiritual ideas. Play therapists available are at times to help them articulate ideas. We also keep a variety of activities on the Gallery with which older children can be occupied during services
Children younger than 5 and their parents may make use of the Quiet Room if they wish.
You can connect with our Facebook page here.