Youth & Family Ministry

children

Child Care and Sunday School
During the 10 a.m. service we offer:
Nursery for Birth – 2 years old
Unikids for 3 – 5 years old
Unifriends for 6 – 10 years
Uniteens for 11 – 13 years
Youth of Unity (YOU) for 14 – 18 years

We warmly welcome all children to Sunday School and special activities.

Our Vision

  • To provide each child the opportunity to discover, explore, and nurture a personal relationship with the presence of God within themselves and others.
  • To guide each child on an inward journey to find the creative power of God that lies in the center of their heart.
  • To empower a sense of Spiritual responsibility.
  • To instill a prayerful consciousness of acceptance and oneness with all people.

Our Mission

  • teen Sunday SchoolThrough Bible, story, and other texts, we help children realize the truth that every person is a beautiful and unique expression of the One!
  • Through sharing Unity principles, we are able to realize that each of us has the ability to change our lives through our thoughts and feelings.
  • Through creative activities, we become aware of our true spiritual nature and our ability to have clarity, calmness, and centeredness, even in the stress and excitement of life.
  • Through Prayer and meditation, we access God and become aware of our oneness with all.
  • Through gratitude, we create a better world.

The Purpose of Spiritual Education

The purpose of Spiritual Education is to bring forth that which already exists (divinity) in the individual. In addition, to see the vision of the continuing transformation of the individual, the community and the world.

Living Curriculum Defined

“A Living Curriculum philosophy was developed by the Association of Unity Churches International (Unity Worldwide Ministries) and is the philosophy that we follow here at Unity of Fort Myers. It is not one specific piece of material, but “is a philosophy, a process and a program of spiritual support to assist children, teens, families and the church community in successful living. A Living Curriculum is designed to ‘draw forth’ the Truth mainly through experiences, storytelling and creative expression. Each lesson relates to an issue in a person’s life and seeks to facilitate an experience of God connected to their life.

“The vision of A Living Curriculum is to empower children and youth to use their spiritual wisdom to fulfill their soul’s purpose; to empower parents to see themselves as the prime spiritual educators of their children and youth; to empower facilitators to see education as a process, through which they effectively support the unfolding of the child’s spiritual nature and model the living of the spiritual principles; to empower a spiritual community to function with unity in diversity; to inspire a world educational community by its philosophy, process, programs and products.” (Association of Unity Churches, International)

Living Curriculum Components

The Issue

What is the issue, theme or principle that is to be explored? An intention is created for each lesson that will assist the children and teens in engaging both their head and their heart.

The Vehicle

The vehicle, (story, video clip, song, poem, life experience, etc…), is the experience that creates the common ground so that everyone present can feel a connection to the lesson intention. Creating common ground also helps the group to bond and to know that they are not the only one to experience such life issues.

The Discussion

The discussion is the heart of each lesson. The questions used invite the children and teens to see how the issue is happening to the characters in the story, how it is happening in their lives and in the world around them. This helps them come to their own conclusions as to how to experience life from a deeper, more connected place.

The Creative Experience

The creative experiences are open ended activities that invite the children and teens to play in what they have heard and shared and to explore how it is relevant to their lives.

The Sharing

Each lesson ends with an opportunity for the children and teens to share what they have experienced. They are also encouraged to take the new discoveries home with them and use them in their daily lives.

5 childrenUnity’s Five Basic Principles for Children

  1. God is all good and active in everything, everywhere.
  2. I am naturally good because God’s divinity is in me and in everyone.
  3. I create my experiences by what I choose to think and what I feel and believe.
  4. Through affirmative prayer and meditation, I connect with God and bring out the good in my life.
  5. I do and give my best by living the truth I know. I make a difference.

Youth Ministry Staff and Volunteers

Ellen Barron

Ellen Barron

Youth Director: Ellen Barron, CSE, Licensed Unity Teacher

Ellen is a Certified Spiritual Educator, and a Licensed Unity Teacher with a focus in Youth & Family Ministry. She is currently enrolled in Unity’s Ministerial Masters of Divinity Program. Ellen has worked in Youth & Family Ministry for the past five years, building a youth program by creating loving, safe, joyous, and fun-filled classrooms in which children discover God within and realize how we are all One! We believe that the truth principles contained within the Unity philosophy are tools that our children can use to expand and transform their lives for a greater expression of God each and every day. 

Ellen also facilitates a weekly teen workshop with a focus is on bringing teens together for group activities that enable them to better understand who they are and how to reach their full potential. We explore the power of meditation and engage in group discussions about Truth principles to see how they apply to everyday experiences. We use videos, crafts, and music to equip teens with diverse spiritual tools and practices. And we share a meal and fellowship all in an atmosphere of love, laughter and safety!

“What a wonderful and empowering message we have to share with our children and each other, that the spiritual realm is one of unconditional and overwhelming love. This love unfolds from the very center of our being. That even as we live in this world full of challenges, we can look inward and find kindness and compassion for all. We can put God first and realize that all answers are present and that everything we could want is already given.”

Youth & Family Ministry Teachers and Volunteer Team

All of our YFM teachers go through a screening process that involves an interview and a national background check. We also have ongoing teacher trainings, both onsite and regionally.

Daniel Leonardi

Daniel Leonardi

Fonda Teske

Fonda Teske

Inge

Inge

Jean Marie Morgan

Jean Marie Morgan

Lynda Lea

Lynda Lea

Sandra Friedrich

Sandra Friedrich


Angela Esteves
Claudia Mendez
Marge DeWitt
Jim DeWitt
Jon Myers
Elizabeth Vallie

 

 

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