Children and Youth on the Move!

Sunday, Aug. 18 is the beginning of our new school year for students in our Children’s Ministries and Merge Youth Ministries.

Children’s Ministries will hold “Move Up Sunday,” the official start of the new programming year. It’s also when kids move up to their new small groups in Sunday Morning/Night Live to match with their grade in school. 9:30 and 11 a.m. in the Wesley Center and 5;30 p.m. at The Portico.

Our Merge Youth Ministries is also kicking of their new school year on that day with “Back to School Night” at 5:30 p.m. in the Harnish Activities Center. Parents and students will enjoy a meal together, sharing fellowship and fun! Emily and Mac will review plans for the coming year while highlighting major events. Youth will meet their new small group leaders and all will have the chance to watch challenge videos featuring youth staff, small group leaders and Pastor Magrey!

Blessing of the Backpacks

Blessing of the Backpacks

Join us Sunday, Aug. 11, for a special Blessing of the Backpacks in all worship services. Elementary, Middle, High School, and school teachers and staff are invited to bring their backpack or briefcase and participate. We will pray that joy will surround each person in the months ahead. The Blessing will take place in all services: 8:30, 9:30 and 11 a.m. services at our Hyde Park campus and 5:30 p.m. at The Portico campus.

Blessing of the Backpacks Litany

Children’s Ministries 2019 3rd Grade Bible Events

Third Grade Bible Presentation in Worship, Sept. 8

A beloved tradition at Hyde Park United Methodist, on Sunday, Sept. 8, our 3rd graders will be presented with their very own Bibles in worship by the pastors. The kids also have the option to participate in our 6-week Bible Boot Camp which also begins on Sept. 8, to help them get to know their Bible. More info on Boot Camp below.

If you would like your child to receive a Bible in worship on Sept. 8, please RSVP here.


Third Grade Bible Boot Camp, (6 weeks, beginning Sept. 8)

11 a.m. – 12 p.m. Wesley Center, Room 302.
Class dates: Sept. 8, 15, 22, 29, Oct. 6 and 13

Ten hut! Bible Boot Camp is a fun, interactive class to help the kids become familiar with their new Bible. Engaging games and challenges (with prizes!) help kids learn how the Bible is arranged, the books of the Bible, how to look up Scripture and more.

The 6-week class culminates with a high spirited competition on Sunday, Oct. 20 where the kids get to show off all they have learned as they challenge their parents to “Are You Smarter Than a 3rd Grader?” – Bible Boot Camp edition. Following the friendly competition (9:30–10 a.m.), families will enjoy a reception with light refreshments and snacks from 10–10:30 a.m. Wesley Center Rooms 308/9.

Last Day of School Ideas

Last Day of School Ideas

Staying up late and sleeping in.
The smell of chlorine in my hair.
Oatmeal cream pies.
Weeks spent at my Grandmother’s.

Maybe your summer memories are different than mine, but I bet we can all agree that summertime is certainly a memorable season.

For our children, it’s a breather from the relentless (and often rigorous!) schedule that school brings. For us, it’s a juggling act of childcare, managing boredom, and trying to squeeze in a few moments in the sun for ourselves.

You have a lot going on, so we wanted to provide you with a few ideas on how to start your summer on a high note!

Last Day of School Ideas


For your preschooler, the last day of school may not actually be the last day of school. Maybe they’re in Pre-K. Maybe they’re in a Mother’s Morning Out program. Or maybe they stay home with you. But you can still mark the beginning of summer in a fun way!

Create a “Countdown to Summer” paper chain by linking together slivers of colored construction paper. Hang a paper sunshine high on a wall, and let the rainbow-colored chain hand down from it. Every day that goes by, have your preschooler remove a piece of the chain. Talk about the colors of the papers, the shape of the sun and what your plans are for the summer. Count the remaining links before bed every night.

Elementary School

This age is fun because they’re still young enough to really excited about things—without being “too cool” for it!

Talk to some of the other parents in your neighborhood, and organize an end-of-the-year water war. One fun idea is to be waiting with water balloons when your child gets off the bus or have balloons at the ready when you get home after picking them up. Make sure the children are in a safe location, then surprise them and fire away. Be sure to have extra water balloons for them, too. A “Parents versus Kids” water war makes it extra fun!

Middle School

Middle school students are funny. They love their friends, can’t drive and get bored easily. For them, summer might come with mixed emotions. (As do most things when you’re in middle school.)

Help set the tone for an exciting break by having a basket of goodies ready for them when they get home from school. You can even make a banner for them outside of your house (depending on how embarrassed you want to make them), or decorate their bedroom door with streamers and balloons.

The contents of the basket can all correspond to fun things they can do in the summer (and can be found at a Discount/Dollar store):

  • Sunscreen (for the pool/lake/beach)
  • Popcorn (for a movie night)
  • Bubbles (no one is ever too old for bubbles)
  • Their favorite candy (for late night snacking)
  • Marshmallows (for a bonfire roasting)
  • Book/magazine (to read on a long drive somewhere fun)
  • Flashlight (for camping)

You get the idea.

High School

Your high school student will most definitely appreciate summer break—especially after they can drive. They’ll probably have jobs, plans with friends, internships, summer reading, etc. Before you lose them for the summer, create a moment on the last day of school.

Teenagers crave one thing: independence. On the last day of school, give your child a new freedom or responsibility. Extend their curfew. Increase their allowance. Grant that one desire they’ve been begging you for (within reason). Extending trust to your high school student is a good way to pave the road for your future relationship with them. They won’t always live in your home forever. Easing up on the control is healthy for them—and for you, too.

Happy last week of school Hyde Park Families…enjoy the summer!

Summer Sunday Morning Live

Summer Sunday Morning Live

Summer Sunday Morning Live is almost here! Parent help needed!
9:30 and 11 a.m., 
Sundays, June 2 – Aug. 11

During this time, our school year shepherds take a much-deserved break and the only way programming can continue is if parents step in!

This is a wonderful opportunity for you to touch lives, change hearts and draw kids closer to God!

How many opportunities allow you to make THAT kind of impact? And it’s a great way to experience Sunday Morning Live with your child!

Grab your spouse, partner, older child (rising seventh grader or older) or dear friend and make it extra fun to serve with someone you know!

All lessons and supplies are supplied/prepared for you – you just need a heart for God and a heart for kids!

Click here to sign up for Sundays.


  • May 15 is last night of Wednesday night programming (Club 45, Zone, Jr Zone)
  • May 19 is last Sunday of our regular Sunday Morning Live programming
“I’m sorry” – Two Words Sticky Faith Taught Me To Say

“I’m sorry” – Two Words Sticky Faith Taught Me To Say

Dr. Kara Powell recently published The Sticky Faith Guide for Your Family and through her research and parent interviews, the power of parents apologizing to their kids quickly became clear. Here’s one thing that she has learned through her research:

What separates Christianity from every other religion is grace. All other religions believe we reach God through obedience and behaviors; in Christianity, God reaches us through unmerited grace.

If we want our homes to drip with grace, we as parents need to be quick to apologize. Confessing our mistakes to our kids and asking them to forgive us not only builds closer family relationships, it also helps our kids experience the closeness of God’s tender mercies.

So thanks to our research, I’ve started saying two words more frequently to my kids. I’m sorry.
“I’m sorry for the tone of voice I used when I asked you to empty the dishwasher.”
“I’m sorry that I misunderstood the conflict you were having with your brother and jumped to an unfair conclusion.”
“I’m sorry that I wasn’t sensitive enough to how tired you were from soccer.”

If you want to make your home a hub of grace, try the following:
1. Keep your personal antennae up for times when your own fatigue causes you to speak unkindly to your kids.
2. When you feel like you’ve wronged your kids, tell them that you’re sorry and ask for their forgiveness.
3. Make sure you are quick to extend forgiveness to your kids when they need to do the same.
According to our research, saying “I’m sorry” isn’t a sign of parental failure. It can be a bridge to greater family intimacy and faith.

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