Children's, Youth, and Family Ministry

At FUMC we strive to provide a fun, welcoming environment to all, while helping children and families grow in their faith together.

Children's Church

Children’s Church is available for kids ages 3 – 2nd grade. After Children’s Time during our regular church services on Sundays, the children are invited to go downstairs to Kids Kingdom for the remainder of the service to learn about their bible story for the day. Similar to Sunday School, it walks the kids through the bible with fun, interactive activities for each story. This year we will be following along with The Story using the early elementary curriculum walking through the bible from Genesis to Revelation in 31 weeks.

When: Children’s Church will begin September 17th, 2023

Time: 10-10:30am Sundays

No Children’s Church: November 26th, 2023; December 24th, 2023; and March 31st, 2024



Pathfinders is for 3rd-5th grade children. They will enjoy a 6-7 week series each semester focusing on finding their path in God’s Kingdom. These series will focus on short bible lessons, team building, fellowship, self-discovery, and service.

Pathfinders Schedule

Wednesday’s from 3:45-5pm beginning October 4th.

Fall Semester Dates: 10/4, 10/18, 11/1, 11/15, 11/29, 12/6

We will have the church van available to pick up kids from Northstar Elementary. Snacks will be provided!

All 3rd through 5th graders are welcome, regardless of school district or church home.


Living Way Youth

Our Youth Group is comprised of youth in grades 6-12. This group will enjoy bible lessons focusing on getting to know God and Jesus and answering some of life’s questions. They also participate in team building, games, fellowship, service projects, mission trips, and more.

Living Way Youth welcome anyone who wishes to participate. The youth assist in planning events such as service projects, mission trips, and more.

When: 1st and 3rd Sunday from 5-7pm

Upcoming Events:

    • October 1st, 5-7pm: Youth Group Kickoff. This will be our official first regular meeting of the year. Come enjoy a fun night of games, fellowship, team building, and meet our new leader!

Upcoming Children's and Family Events


We offer a variety of Children’s and Family events throughout the year. Here is a listing of what we have scheduled for Fall 2023. More events may get added, watch our Facebook page for updated information.

Movie Night
October 7th, 2023
Time 6-7:30pm
Feature Film: Spooky Buddies
Join Knoxville First United Methodist Church and Montgomery Street Preschool for a family friendly outdoor movie night. We will be set up in our Family Life Center on 4th street to enjoy a movie and concessions. Bring your own chair or blanket! All are welcome!
Children’s Christmas Program

December 10th during 9:30 worship service.

We will begin practicing for our Children’s Christmas Program on October 22nd from 10:30-11am following service. Practices will be held 10/22, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12, 11/19, and 12/3. Children are required to attend 3 practices including December 3rd in order to be able to participate. 
Contact Laurent Petersen with questions or if you are interested in participating. Lauren – or 641-842-3712.

Our Setting

We have newly renovated spaces for our Children’s and Youth Ministries with bright, colorful, inviting rooms that are multifunctional for a variety of activities. We also have access to an indoor play area, outdoor playground, and our new Family Life Center featuring pickleball, volleyball, basketball, concession stand, and meeting space.

Director of Children's, Youth, and Family Ministry

My name is Lauren Petersen and I am the Children’s, Youth, and Families Ministry Director. Here is a little bit of information about me. My husband Jacob and I have two daughters, Nora and Anna. We live on a farm outside of Knoxville where we raise sheep along with a menagerie of other farm animals. I love spending time outside on the farm doing chores and helping my girls with all their animals. In the summers we travel all around the state showing sheep. In my spare time I love to read, swim, go for walks, and just enjoy the outdoors.

I love being a part of First United Methodist Church’s staff and look forward to getting to know all our wonderful families and kids. My goal in this position is to make a positive impact on peoples lives and help our children and youth grow in their faith and understanding of God. If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Email address: or call 641-842-3712