The Church at Old Town plans to send kids to school with love

Published 2:38 pm Thursday, July 27, 2023

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By BARTON PERKINS | Staff Writer

HELENA – The Church at Old Town will send children to school with loving notes when it continues its Backpack Blessings program on Sunday, Aug. 6.

Backpack Blessings is a program where students of all ages have notes pinned to their backpacks by church members as a way for them to remember that they are being thought of and prayed for throughout their day at school.

“It’s intentional time we set apart here praying over them as students of the new school year,” said Ashley Bolen, preschool and children’s director. “We put a special tag on their backpack that just reminds them that they are supported, loved and prayed for by us as a church.”

Students of all ages, from elementary to high school, come to Backpack Blessingsas a way for them to kick off the school year. The program has run since the Church at Old Town opened doors two years ago and was the brainchild of Bowen.

“I know there can be lots of anxiety and concerns with the new school year,” Bolen said. “It’s just to kind of put everyone’s mind at ease and pray for them, love them and support them.”

The notes students receive at Backpack Blessings are two-sided. On one side is a message reminding students that their community at Old Town is thinking and praying for them. The other side of the note has a selection of biblical verses.

“We’re hoping these Bible verses help them remember that they are chosen, they’re protected, they are strengthened,” Bolen said.” And that’s what we are emphasizing as they go into the new school year.”

Students from all over Shelby County are expected to attend this year’s Backpack Blessings, including Helena, Alabaster, Pelham and more.