One day we’re wide-eyed and the possibilities are endless, and then slowly, without even realizing it, we find ourselves dulled by the routines and disappointments that are a part of being human. We lose our optimism and zest for life.
This season in MOPS and MOMSNext, we will focus on what it means living life to the full. Which means living grateful, joyful, and hopeful. It means being led by the Good Shepherd and trusting that everything is working out exactly as it should.
But here’s one important thing to remember: this idea of life to the full isn’t about striving for more. It’s not about striving at all. It is about recognizing that life isn’t a bunch of goals to achieve or people to please; but an invitation to savor, delight, and enjoy your life just a little more.
Mothers of Preschoolers
Meet together to laugh, cry, learn and embrace the journey of motherhood. MOPS groups rally women to be more honest, to feel more equipped and to find our identity by journeying alongside one another.
Get to know other moms through our bi-weekly meetings on Thursday mornings (with childcare!), play dates, special events, social media groups, monthly newsletters and more!
Every woman at our MOPS group is important because she is a part of a table that remains together over the entire year. This purposeful, small group structure provides safety, connections, and is intentionally designed to make you feel welcomed!
Mothers of School-Aged Children
MOMSNext moms are in the rhythm of parenting their kindergarten+ children, yet still, encounter new challenges. These moms are in a phase of personal growth where they may have more freedom to pursue professional or personal interests now that their kids are older.
Moms in this stage often run from one commitment to the next. These meetings 1-2 times a month on Thursday mornings are a time to catch your breath, connect with others facing the unique demands of parenting older children, and build relationships that will help you sharpen your focus on what’s important to your family.
Our meetings are generally held twice monthly on Thursdays, from 9 – 11 a.m. on opposite weeks. We meet from September to December and February through April. We do not formally meet in January due to our collegiate childcare workers’ school schedules.
Every MOPS group does things a little differently. Since we have a large group, we work hard to ensure that each mom has the opportunity to comfortably connect with other moms in a small group of 8-10 people at each table. Our meetings typically open with a time to connect with other moms over brunch and coffee, relevant and thought-provoking teaching, prayer, discussion time and dismissal.
Leadership: Each table includes a Mentor Mom and one or two Discussion Group Leaders. Mentor Moms are a group of older women who have successfully lived through the early and middle years of parenting and have committed to coming alongside and mentoring younger moms. Discussion Group Leaders fulfill their title and coordinate table activities and stay connected with members of the table.
The Discussion Group Leaders and Mentor Moms receive oversight and direction from leaders on the Steering Team, who coordinate each area of MOPS. Here is a list of our Steering Team.
MOPS/MOMSNext are not Bible studies, but instead a group of women who want to grow to be better moms, women, and leaders. You will probably hear our speakers, Discussion Group Leaders, and others reference God and Jesus and we’d love to talk with you more about what you think, but no one will judge you or pressure you to believe anything.
If you are interested in a Bible study, West Shore Free Church offers Women’s Bible Study in both the Fall and Spring. There are multiple classes and more information can be found here.
Your membership dues mainly go toward high-quality childcare, but also towards consistent, encouraging a time of fellowship with other moms in a beautiful, welcoming environment where you are wanted. You also get access to a closed Facebook community with encouraging posts, play date info, community events and plenty of “mom wisdom” and other MOPS International information like a weekly email, a special gift that matches our theme, and MOPS website and Facebook pages.
Scholarship: Our MOPS group is glad to work with you because we want you here! Scholarships and other options are available.
Payment Plan: Because joining the group is $132, it might be helpful to break it up & pay over a longer period of time. Your total cost to join one of our groups is $132. You can start with a $60 deposit and reserve any places that you may need for child care. These spaces are complimentary and available on a limited basis. Your $40 balance due to WSFC can be paid anytime before December. You may add your MOPS International Fee membership fee to your WSEFC registration and we will register you or you may pay the $32 directly to MI through mops.org/join.
If you self-register, the group code for our MOPS group is TSYU and the group code for our MOMSNext group is 54BR. This must be paid before September.
Every child that comes must be pre-registered. If you do not see your child’s birthdate range on the registration form we have filled and you will need to make other arrangements for him/her.
Donations: If you are interested in donating to help other moms afford MOPS, please contact our Finance Coordinator, Karen Smith, or Lisa Dunlap.
MOPS Kids provides childcare for children over three months through kindergarten in this preschool style program. Trained, committed, and experienced Messiah College students have been partnering with West Shore Free Church for the last 25 years.
We also provide oversight for homeschooled children from first through fifth grade, but there is no specific curriculum.
Drop Off: Our childcare workers begin at 8:45 a.m. and please plan to arrive early to help with the flow of drop-off. The nursery for newborns through 23 months and preschool is located on the upstairs floor. After dropping off the youngest children, four and five-year-olds can be taken downstairs and checked-in in their classrooms. Either at the registration desk or in the classroom, you can provide special instructions and your phone number in case of being contacted during the meeting. (If you do not have a cell-phone, other methods of contact are available.)
What to Bring: Bring items that are necessary to provide a comfortable during MOPS Kids. All items should be clearly labeled & cups/bottles unbreakable. Please only pack and use disposable diapers for sanitary purposes. If your child is potty training, please wear disposable training pants and complete pack a change of clothing.
Health Guidelines: For the health of all the children, and for the peace of mind of every parent, children with symptoms of illness will not be accepted into MOPS KIDS. The Parenting Golden Rule is, “Do unto other parents as you would have them do unto you.”
We ask you to respect others when your child is sick. If your child is not well enough to attend MOPS Kids, they should not be brought into the meeting room with expectant mothers and small infants.
Upon the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics, please do not bring children with the following symptoms to MOPS Kids:
● Fever currently or within the last 24 hours
● Vomiting or diarrhea within the last 24 hours
● Any symptom of childhood disease
● Runny nose with any colored discharge
● Sore throat
● Any unexplained rash
● Any skin infection
● Pink eye or other eye infection
● Head lice — child should be free from all nits
You will be notified immediately if your child becomes sick during the meeting. Caregivers will not give medication of any kind, including Tylenol.