CHILDREN’S NEWS by Kellie Gordon
November 29th During Education Hour
November 29th is the Advent Festival. Please plan to come to Stolee Hall during the Education Hour (9:30-10:30) to make your Advent Wreath, decorate a cookie, handcraft a tree ornament, and pick up your Devotional for the Advent Season. If you have a craft or an activity you wouldn’t mind leading, please talk to Kellie. Always looking for fun, creative ideas!
Mark Your Calendar
December 13 — Children’s Christmas Program and Gingerbread House Event 4:00 p.m. at TLC
The JAMers group enjoyed bowling and pizza to kick off their activities for the coming year. They’re excited to get to know one another and also, to serve their community. if you have any projects in mind that the JAMers (4th and 5th graders) might help with, please let us know. The first thing they’re wanting to tackle is helping make more Life Packs for the homeless.
Parenting with Love and LogicTM
Our Fall session of Parenting with Love and LogicTM wrapped up on October 15th, marking the 9th course we’ve offered through TLC in the last three years. This group and the last included parents from DSHS whose children are presently in foster care. The Love and Logic® course is recognized by Family Courts in the State of Washington as being a service which educates parents, strengthens parenting skills, and helps with reunification of families.
I thought I’d begin to include a story or two each session of the Tidings, so that you, too, can feel the benefit of offering this course to our community. One woman who took Parenting the Love and Logic WayTM asked a lot of questions during the course. One day, her question related to the supervised visits she has with her 3-year-old son — and how she wants to make the most of these short visits, and finds herself often NOT correcting him because she wants the experience to be only positive.
We talked about how Love and Logic® philosophies truly serve to strengthen the parent-child bond with the setting of boundaries, and that only with limits can children feel safe and secure.
After the class, the woman stayed behind to ask more questions. It was clear to me that there was so much on her mind, and she just needed someone to listen. She waited until everyone had gone for the night, and helped me gather up the class materials. She tearfully shared that she was homeless, currently living in her car, and had struggled with meth use, but was now clean. She hoped to soon get a job, get a home, and eventually get her son back. But that night, she felt particularly hopeless about it all, because the next day was another visit with her son, and it was also his birthday. She didn’t have any money to buy him a birthday gift, and this made her feel “like the biggest loser mom ever.” As she described her despair, I couldn’t help feel an overwhelming empathy for the mom, who was trying so hard to get her life back together.
Suddenly, I also remembered that that day, someone (a Trinity member? if so, thank you!) had dropped off a large bag of brand new stuffed animals. Most of the animals still had tags on them, and had never been used. I went to my office to get the bag, and brought it to the woman. I told her to pick two animals that she thought her son might like. It wasn’t much, but at least she wouldn’t have to show up to the visit empty-handed on her son’s 4th birthday. A small, hesitant smile came across her tear-stained face, and she said, “Really? That’s so kind of you!” I told her I wish it could be more, but that I felt those stuffed animals were delivered to us with her son in mind. I was just the catalyst that brought them together. She hugged me, thanked me profusely, and left the building with a lightness and a hope I hadn’t seen before. She completed the course, received her certificate, and, I believe, is one baby step closer to being permanently reunited with her little boy.
This young mom is not alone. There are many just like her. These are some of the people TLC is serving through our Love and Logic® parenting classes. Others are parents who simply want to be better parents, or who have a child facing a particular struggle. I feel honored to be part of this ministry, and grateful to all of you who support it. I wanted you to share in the small victories I see every week.
In His Service,
Kellie Gordon, Trinity Lutheran Church Director of Children’s Ministries is an Independent Facilitator of the Parenting the Love and Logic WayTM curriculum.