Groups that meet on Sundays
Xplorers is a Sunday morning group for 2-5 year olds. It meets upstairs in the second part of the service – follow the stars and rockets from the main entrance foyer.
A typical Xplorer session has a ten minute mat time with two songs, a story and a shared prayer, followed by a creative response activity and free play.
We encourage you to stay with your children at Xplorers until they are comfortable to stay by themselves. A leader will bring your child back to you if they get distressed or if they need to go to the toilet.
We share some plain rice crackers as a pre-morning tea snack, and will let you know if any other foods will be involved in the activities. Children are welcome to have a snack in the service beforehand – please do not send your child with food or drink to Xplorers so we can keep children with allergies safe.
When your child turns 5 then they can join Quest group, if they want. They can also stay in the Xplorers until they’re ready to join Quest if they’d prefer.
Under 2s are very welcome to join the Xplorers, as long as they have a parent or caregiver with them.
Quest is a Sunday-morning group for people in Years 0-4 (with some Year 5s if they want to come too). It meets on the Mt Eden Road side of the hall, in the second half of the Sunday morning services – head out the door by the steps in the auditorium, and go on past the toilets.
A Quest is an adventurous journey – which is what life is like. At Quest, we explore ways of living life well and journeying with God and each other. A typical session has a together-time with things like check-ins, songs, stories, discussion, communal prayer and maybe a game. This is usually followed by a series of creative response stations, where children are invited to reflect on the content of the session and to spend time noticing and interacting with God. These stations might be done with others or by themselves – it varies. We aim to give children opportunities and space to develop their relationship with God, self and each other.
When your child is aged 9 or in Year 5, whichever comes first, then they can choose to move to Odyssey group if they want. They can also choose to stay on in Quest while they are in Year 5 if they prefer, until they are ready to change.
Odyssey is a Sunday-morning group for people in Years 5-8 (and Year 9 and 10s if they want to come too). Odyssey meets on the kitchen side of the hall, in the second half of the Sunday morning services – head out the brown door in the auditorium, and go up the ramp.
An Odyssey is a long and adventurous journey – which is what life is like. At Odyssey, we explore ways of living life well and journeying with God and each other. A typical session is similar to that described for Quest group, pitched at a higher level.
When your child is aged 13 or in Year 9, whichever comes first, then they can choose to move to Matrix group if they want. They can also choose to stay on in Odyssey if they prefer until they are ready to change. Alternatively, they may wish to attend both Odyssey and Matrix sessions if they’d like to be part of Matrix but are not quite ready to stay through the whole service yet.
Matrix is a Sunday morning group for people in Years 9-13 at school.
A matrix is a situation or place in which something else develops – in biology it can be a rock in which gems or fossils are embedded, or the molecules that give structure and support to the surrounding cells (the logo design has neurons connecting to each other).
In Cityside’s Matrix, the aim is to create a time and a place where young people can connect to each other and God, as well as to reflect on what happened in the service, so that they can connect better with that as well. The group will be a support structure for deepening connection with God, self and others.
Matrix will meet in the basement just after the service most Sundays from 11:30am-12:15pm, and they’ll have morning tea together, and then chat about what they found interesting in the service, any questions that came up for them, and share about any God-moments they may have had. They’ll also talk about spiritual practices they could do during the week to connect with God, and will check in with each other to see how it’s all going for them.
About once a month there’ll be something different: they’ll have morning tea upstairs with all Citysiders followed by a ‘hang out’ event for Matrix people in the afternoon, like a bike ride, shared lunch at different Citysiders’ houses, a café visit, swim or some other adventure.
Year 9s are welcome to attend both Matrix and Odyssey groups if they would like to, especially if they find the whole service too long or have younger friends.
It’s really important that Citysiders of all ages have opportunities to connect deeply with each other. Contributing to our community can also help people feel connected and valuable. We want to make sure our children and young people feel that their contributions are welcome and that they have opportunities to interact meaningfully with people of all ages.
- Teenagers aged 14+ can choose to help with the Xplorers and Quest groups, if they would like to. We provide training and mentoring for this role.
- Older children and youth can volunteer to be on the Cityside Hospitality roster: welcoming people on the door, preparing food for morning tea, or even doing the dishes! Sign up here: firstname.lastname@example.org
- We always welcome contributions and ideas from children and youth. If your child would like to prepare a prayer station or a reading for one of the Sunday morning groups or in the service, please let the people organising Children and Youth @ Cityside know. We’ll be extending regular invitations to them too.