Learning about Christ and Christianity doesn’t stop at Sunday school. Educational opportunities for all ages exist at Wayside.
Wayside offers continuing education on a volunteer basis. Members are encouraged to join in and fill any educational roles that suit their interests and talents.
Weekly Study Group
A leader hosts a weekly study group during the school year on Tuesday afternoons. Sessions are typically 60-90 minutes and often begin with watching a video, followed by group discussion. Study series on a particular topic last 8-12 weeks, but drop-ins are always welcome, as the atmosphere is informal and quite social. Past series have explored the travels of St. Paul, interfaith cooperation, legal issues associated with aging, and the historical development of the New Testament.
Adult education on more diverse topics is also offered. Through lectures, seminars, and presentations, often scheduled with a meal, making these events both educational and sociable. There is no fixed schedule of such events, so this is a good area to voice your interest in a particular topic, especially if you or someone you know is available to provide the instruction. We’ve recently had events exploring the minimum-wage debate, coping with grief, the Windows 10 operating system, and one family’s visit to Myanmar.
Movies With Meaning
Wayside’s Movies With Meaning program screens films featuring a topic currently shaping our society, either a documentary or historical drama. Screenings are usually scheduled once a month following the 10:00am service, followed by discussion for those who wish to further explore the issues raised. Previous topics have included autism self-advocacy, transgender rights, and women’s suffrage.
Memorial Lounge Library
Most of the DVDs screened as Movies With Meaning are part of Wayside’s multi-media library, available for checkout in the lounge adjoining the office. A wide variety of resource books, novels, Bibles, devotionals, and children’s literature can also be found there.
Wayside History Project
Our church has a proud legacy of more than fifty years service to the Federal Way community, a legacy that is being preserved and revived for the future by members working to assemble a multimedia library showcasing our history of its own. The project team meets Tuesday mornings twice a month.
A guided tour of the highlights of from Wayside’s history (and the meaning behind the events) is available twice a year at Wayside 101, an hour-long crash course explaining why we are so dedicated to this pair of little buildings in the woods.
Sunday school is a traditional part of many families’ church experience. Our Sunday services are structured to include the children in worship before adjourning to the classroom. Participation in Church School is, of course, optional and does not require knowledge of the previous week’s material.
Wayside engages active young minds with an innovative curriculum of learning materials produced by the United Church of Christ, called “Faith Practices”. Organized around a set of behaviors and attitudes that assist in Faith Formation, the materials span the age spectrum, with age-appropriate lessons for all.
Youth Group at Wayside includes young people in the 6th through 12th grades. The youth groups meet on Sunday mornings, but also for events at other times throughout the year. Wayside youth devote time and effort to community service projects and to fund-raising efforts for worthwhile causes. Wayside’s Youth Group also meets periodically to learn, grow, and have fun together and with other regional youth groups.
Our Whole Lives: Amy Johnson, MSW and certified instructor for the program, hosts Our Whole Lives, a nationally-known curriculum designed by the UCC in collaboration with the Unitarian church. The program’s focus is on age-appropriate information about “Sexuality and Our Faith”“.
The United Church of Christ has designated the Pilgrim Firs campground on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula as its national Center for Environmental Justice. Wayside and other UCC churches organize annual retreats to this site both to enjoy and learn how to preserve its scenic beauty.
We also strive to recognize and protect the treasures in our own neighborhood. Each August an outdoor service is celebrated on Wayside’s lawn, followed by a fellowship picnic potluck.
Behind the Chapel lies the Holcom Trail, a short nature walk prepared as an Eagle-Scout project by Wayside youth (now Admiral UCC pastor) Andrew Holcom. Visitors are invited to walk the trail and enjoy a time of contemplation.