River Oak Church of God

River Oak Kids

River Oak Kids Ministries is committed to ministering to children by educating, encouraging, and enabling them to succeed as our next generation of worshipers and servants of the Lord. River Oak Kids meet in the Student Center. We welcome children of all backgrounds for one purpose to teach God’s Word. On Wednesday nights our children are part of the River Oak Kids Ministry. At this time, they are continuing to learn God’s Word through music, interactive lessons, and games.


At RiverOak Church of God, children are a central part of our church family. Our mission is to minister to the spiritual, emotional, and physical needs of the children in our community. Our goal is to guide each child and their family into a lifelong relationship with our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Leadership/Ministry Team

Our Children’s Ministry is led by a highly energetic innovative team starting with Heather.Heather is the Children’s pastor here at River Oak. She grew up just outside of Charlottesville, VA, and she attended James Madison University and graduated in 2010 with a degree in Health Science and a minor in Biology. She has been involved in Children’s Ministry since 2006 starting in her home church Nortonsville Church of God. She has been leading the River Oak Kids ministry since February 2014. She married her husband Carlos in July of 2014. She has a serious passion for working with children and seeing them grow in their walk with the Lord. She loves going out to eat, watching movies, reading, supporting James Madison, spending time with her family, and also CUPCAKES!

Our Children’s Church Music Director is Jennifer Dowdy. Her husband, Jerry is in charge of our technical systems. She has developed a Praise and Worship team for our children’s church and has provided musical leadership for the last 3 years. She also has volunteered in a variety of ways with the children’s program over the last seven years.

Our children’s ministry is made complete by the many parent volunteers who assist in the River Oak Kids Juniors class, family events, stage preparations for performances, ministering in nursing homes, and all the events where our children are involved.

General Information About Our Kids Program

Picking Up and Dropping Off Children

Our children attend Children’s Church in the Student Center each Sunday during the adult’s church service. Our service starts at 10:30am, so we ask that you drop you child off at 10:20am. We would love for you to bring your child and introduce him to us in Children’s Church your first Sunday attending Riveroak Church of God. We believe it is important for us to call your child by their name so they feel comfortable even that first Sunday. If your child has any special needs we want to know them. We have worked very hard to create a safe environment for our children.

We ask that a parent/guardian promptly pick up your child after service. Your child will not be allowed to leave the room until a parent has released them. Once you have picked up your child, we ask that you would be responsible for the safety, behavior, and well being of your child so that our staff has an opportunity to clean the room and minister to other parents if needed.

Our Rules and Enforcement

It is important in a church service (or Wednesday classroom) setting to maintain order so each child has an opportunity to learn about God’s Word. We ask that children do not bring toys into the children’s area. We remind the children to respect each other and their property by not hitting, kicking, or pushing. We ask them to raise their hand when asking questions. Once our children are in the classroom or Student Center and the lesson or service has begun, we do not let them leave unattended. We operate on the “Red Chair” system. The first time your child breaks a rule they are asked to stop and the rule explained, the second time they are given a warning, and the third time they go sit in a “Red Chair” until the end of the service. After the service a children’s ministry volunteer will bring your child to you so they can explain that they sat in the “Red Chair” during the service and why.

During Worship

The Children’s Church sanctuary provides an exciting, safe, interactive, and energy-charged atmosphere of FUN worship for children ages 5 through 6th grade. Both the River Oak Kids and the River Oak Kids Juniors begin Children’s Church together. After the offering the River Oak Kids Juniors go to a separate room for a lesson appropriate for younger children. River Oak Kids, age 7 to 12, remain in the Student Center. Activities include Bible lessons, hands-on group activities, skits and role playing, various media, story telling, and outrageously fun games. Time is given each week to pray for the spiritual needs and prayer requests given by the children.

Group activities are scheduled every 1-2 months to provide events involving the entire family. A few of our major annual events include:

  • Eggstravaganza Egg Hunt
  • Movie Nights
  • Boys Bash Camporee and Girls Jamboree
  • End of School Bash and Back-to-School Bash
  • Christmas Party
  • Valentine’s Treasured Hearts Gala
  • Special Trips

Commitment to Excellence

The River Oak Kids Ministry is committed to excellence for the spiritual, emotional, and physical development of our children. As a TEAM, we are continuously searching for new ways to bring cutting edge ideas to enhance our ministry. As we continue to grow in number and spirit, our church strives to provide your child with what they deserve and your expect…the very best God has for them! Join us…your family will be glad you did!