First friends is dedicated to the task of helping your babies, 6 weeks to preschool, grow and introducing them to the love of Jesus from the very beginning.
We will explore God’s word, express our love for Him in praise and worship, and experience how to live for Jesus every day!



Shelly Straher is our director of First Friends. In her spare time, you can find her enjoying an ice cream
from Ronnie’s (yes, the movie theater…we don’t know, just go with it like we do, okay?) and hanging out
with her husband Dale and the rest of her family, who she treasures most deeply. She demonstrates an
incredible care for each of the kids in First Friends and is always looking for a reason to host a tiny
dance party. She can’t wait to meet your family!


  • When is childcare offered in First Friends?
    • We can’t wait to minister to your child during Sunday services at 9:30am and 11am.
  • How do I know my child is going to be well taken care of and safe?
    • The safety and security of all children is top priority. We have secured and monitored areas where our children learn and play, as well as a security team that is available if needed. All of our adult team members have passed background checks to ensure another layer of safety.
  • Each week
    • We will be taking temperatures before admitting all our kiddos.
    • We will not be serving snack at this time.
    • Limited contact check in.
    • Bring no items from home with the exception of bottles and diapers.
    • We want to keep your child clean and happy! Please provide the necessary items for diapering your child. These items should be in a bag, clearly marked with the child’s name. For sanitation reasons, we encourage parents to provide disposable diapers. We will check diapers often and change diapers at least every two hours.
  • Bottle fed and nursing babies
    • Infants will be fed formula, milk, juice or water in bottles, if provided by the parent. Bottles must be ready to feed and have instructions for warming. A private nursing area is available.
  • Sick children
    • For the protection of all children, parents are asked not to drop off a sick child. Upon the recommendation of the Committee on Control of Infectious Diseases of the American Academy of Pediatrics, a child should not be taken from home when any of the following exist:
      • A fever, vomiting or diarrhea currently or within the previous 24 hours
      • Any symptom of a childhood disease such as scarlet fever, measles, mumps, chickenpox or whooping cough
      • Common Cold-from onset through one week
      • Sore throat, Croup, persistent cough or green runny nose
      • Any unexplained rash
      • Head lice
      • Pink eye or other eye infection
      • Hand, foot and mouth disease
      • If a child develops a fever or other symptoms of illness while at church, he/she will be isolated and the parents contacted to take the child home.
  • What ages is First Friends for?
    • Children, six-weeks through age five are assigned to preschool rooms based on their date of birth.
  • How do I find First Friends?
    • The map below should help you locate the First Friends lobby.


  • How do I pick my child up?
    • To ensure security during pick up times, parents must present the ticket issued at check-in that day.
  • What if I am needed during my small group time or during the worship service?
    • If your attention is required, we will alert you by putting your child’s ticket number on the screen in the main service, texting your phone, or finding you at the room number provided at check-in.
  • What will my child be doing while in First Friends?
    • Our programming focuses teaching toddlers God’s word and that He loves them very much!


First Friends loves participating in our Awana Clubs.  Puggles® recognizes the learning ability of 2 1/2 and 3-year olds by introducing biblical truth at church and equipping parents to teach them at home, while Cubbies® celebrates the spiritual potential of preschoolers (3- to 5-year olds) by helping them develop respect for God, His Son and His Word.  For information on our Awana  Clubs program, please see the First Kids Wednesday tab.





Shelly Straher

Administrator Early Childhood Education

office: 636.296.7729 x118

Kim Schmoll

First Friends Coordinator

office: 636.296.7729x118