Family
Ministries

At GCC, we aim to partner with families to make a generation of disciples who love God, grow in community, and reach out with the love of Christ.
 
We want to be a church filled with families of all types that are transformed by the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Partnering with families to make disciples

Brandon Read

Family Ministries Director

KID CITY

Kid City is our Sunday morning environment for children ages birth to 5th grade and is offered for all ages during all three services. At Kid City, your children will have the opportunity to learn about Jesus in a safe, fun environment while you are worshipping and fellowshipping.

Kid City is located just down the hallway from our sanctuary and main meeting areas. It is less than a one minute walk from the front of the sanctuary to the check-out point of Kid City.

Once securely checked into Kid City, children are divided into the following classrooms:

Nursery: 0-18 months
Toddler Room: 18-36 months
3s Class: 3-4 years old
Pre-K: 4 & 5 year olds (or until your child starts Kindergarten)
Elementary Suite (they will watch the lesson together in the main room, then divide):
Kindergarten & 1st Grade Class
2nd & 3rd Grade Class
4th & 5th Grade Class
For our nursery and toddler rooms, there is no formalized curriculum. We have found that our youngest children are best served by being prayed over, sung to, and given safe play time during the service.

For our 3-year-old through 5th grade classes, we follow the Gospel Project for Kids curriculum. Each Sunday every child, regardless of age, is learning the same Bible lesson at an age-appropriate level. Your child will watch a video lesson created by the Gospel Project and will be led by our volunteers through a discussion, craft, and/or games related to that lesson.

To help you continue to discussion at home, each child is given an activity sheet to take home with them. These activity sheets have fun games for kids and great discussion starters for parents to use to continue gospel-centered conversations at home.

The safety of all children is of the utmost importance to us; our precautionary policies include:

We have a single access point for all of Kid City, which is monitored at all times. If someone is entering the Kid City area, we know it.

All Kid City volunteers are background checked and required to wear a name tag at all times. If you see a volunteer without a name tag, please alert another volunteer or staff member.

We do not change diapers. You will be paged if your child needs a fresh diaper.

Two volunteers must be with a child at a time. A volunteer will never be alone with your child.

We have a secure check-in and check-out system. 
  • When your family checks-in, you will receive a parent/guardian tag and a name tag for each child entering Kid City. 
  • Children’s name tags include their age and any medical notes you have provided. They will wear their name tags the entire time they are in Kid City. 
  • The parent tag will display a unique code which will be displayed on the screen in the sanctuary if we need to page you during the service. 
  • You will need to retain the parent/guardian tag in order to pick up your children at the end of the service. Parent tags are required to pick up children and ensures that children are being picked up by the appropriate party. This is a security measure we take very seriously; thank you for your cooperation!

GOSPEL STUDENT MINISTRIES

Gospel Student Ministries includes all of the events we offer for students 6th - 12th grade. Currently, GSM meets on Thursday nights from 7 to 9 p.m. for Engage and on Sunday mornings during the 9:30 a.m. service time for a GSM Discipleship Community. GSM also holds retreats, service projects, and Christian concerts at various times throughout the year.

*During COVID, we only meet on Thursdays in the Cafe on the second floor*

GSM meets on the 3rd floor of our building (1301 Rivermont Ave.) in the youth suite.
 
On Thursday nights for Engage, students can be dropped off (or walked in, we love meeting parents!) at the rear entrance where a team of volunteers will be available to check them in and walk them upstairs to the suite.
 
On Sunday mornings for our Discipleship Community, students can meet upstairs in the youth suite at 9:30 a.m.

Engage is a casual environment held on Thursday evenings and designed to mimic what our adult attenders experience in a Gospel Community.

For the first hour, students will have snacks, play games, and simply hang out and get to know one another.

During the second hour, the students are led in a time of worship, Bible teaching, and small group discussion. For discussion, students are divided into groups based on gender and age.
On Sunday mornings at 9:30 a.m., our GSM Discipleship Community meets in the youth suite where we do a topical Bible study designed to mimic what our adult attenders experience in one of our Discipleship Communities.

Topics are different than what we study on Thursdays at Engage and are chosen by our GSM leadership based on the needs and issues facing the GCR youth, including things like identity, apologetics, theology, and more.

VILLAGE434

Village434 is a ministry within Gospel Community Church whose heart is to support those caring for orphans and vulnerable children, while also engaging the church at-large to live out our Heavenly Father’s heart of compassion toward the fatherless.

JOIN THE VILLAGE!

Your support of these families is vital. We have two separate ways for you to care for families at Gospel who are fostering, adopting or part of Safe Families. The needs will fluctuate based on the needs of the families, but by signing up you’ll be able to truly be a part of their village and the incredible work the Lord is doing in and through these families.

Option 1

This option is less hands-on and is more focused on meeting tangible needs, which will be sent out via email.

Option 2

This option is more hands-on and allows you to be directly involved in caring for our foster families through what is called a Care Community. We want every family who is caring for orphans or vulnerable children to have a structured circle of support around them. There is a constant need for volunteers here and this kind of support matters deeply. (See a testimonial below to hear what a difference this ministry made for one GCC family).

WHY THE NAME?

Village434, pulls from the familiar saying “it takes a village.” Parents know this phrase well, but in the foster care and adoption world, it rings even more true. In fact, the phrase originated in Africa where the belief was that it took an entire community for children to grow and flourish in a healthy and safe environment. The 434 comes from Acts 4:34 “none of them needed anything.” It’s a gigantic goal, but it is the heart behind the ministry, no doubt about it. The 434 also happens to be Lynchburg’s area code!

Why it Matters

"My husband, August, and I started attending Gospel the summer of 2019 when we moved to the area. We looked at a few churches in the area and while there are many things that drew us to Gospel, the final affirmation came when we found out Gospel is actively supporting foster families. We had been talking and praying about becoming foster parents for a few years and knew we would need a church to come around us if we ever said “yes.” Fast forward to this winter, we wrapped up our licensing and accepted our first foster placement on February 26, 2020! Man. What a whirlwind. We do not have any biological children of our own, and there was really no way to prepare for the two active, sweet kids who now run through our hallways! And that’s where Gospel comes in.
 
The night we said “yes” to these two [foster] kids, I emailed Olivia, the ministry resident, a quick email saying we needed some help. Just a few hours later, Amy and Julia [from Village434] were calling. They dropped off a stroller, baby carrier and high chair. They installed a crib and made the bed. Meals were in the works. Prayers were being said. I felt so enveloped and loved by these people that, frankly, I did not know! What an amazing picture of the body of Christ and unity we find in Him!
 
For the next week, I received daily texts and facebook messages from Amy and Julia, as well as other members at Gospel, sharing scripture, prayers, and telling me that “No, I wasn’t crazy,” [providing foster care] is super hard, but God will continue to give us what we need for each day. There is so much more detail I could share about the ways they bridged the gaps for us and helped us carry this cross, but it would be too much to read!
I wanted to send this email to extend my worship for the ways God meets us where we are. It’s hard to express how it feels and how much help we need/needed. The Village434 team is changing lives. It changed ours! It changed the two kiddos in our home. So thank you for following God’s call to this kind of community support. We couldn’t do this without it."

In Christ,
Alison and August
Spring 2020

Need Support?

Are you currently fostering, adopting, or serving with Safe Families? We want to make sure you’re supported, so click here to fill out a form, and we will be in touch with you!