A local church is now reaching out to mothers of young children with a support group program.
Heritage Baptist Fellowship of Canton now regularly hosts relaxed and informal meetings of its program, Mothers Offering Mutual Support, for moms with preschool children looking to meet with other local mothers to exchange advice on various issues of daily life.
“We’ll share our stories,” says a post on the MOMS website. “We’ll talk through the parenting “stuff” and the mom “stuff.” We’ll listen. We’ll definitely laugh and most likely eat, too.”
The program’s mantra is “moms supporting each other.”
“We’re a system of support for each other,” said Kim Mason, a founding and current member of MOMS.
Mothers can meet over coffee and discuss topics such as homemade gift ideas, food recipes or tips for living well on a budget.
“Each week when we gather, we’ll have a guiding topic,” an online post. “We’ll share info, tips and stories along these lines and see where the conversation takes us.”
Mason adds additional insight into what happens during the get-togethers.
“We have a topic for discussion each week that we kind of loosely adhere to, but it gives us a starting point for discussion each week. It’s different things that affect our children or us as mothers that we give each other advice on. Sometimes we just hear frustrations or joys about whatever the topic is. Often times we veer far away from the topic and just talk about whatever we want to talk about that particular day,” she said.
Mason said that the MOMS program is a new venture that Heritage Baptist began to undertake last fall.
Meetings usually take place at the Heritage Baptist church building on Georgia Highway 140 toward Waleska. Sometimes the group will take trips together to a local park, pumpkin patch or other enjoyable venue.
“Normally we meet at the church,” Mason said. “But sometimes we will take an outing. We went to a pumpkin patch in the fall, and sometimes we go to Chick-Fil-A for some food, fellowship and for the children to play in the play area.”
Although MOMS meetings typically occur at the church, religious teachings are not the focus of the get-togethers.
“Bible studies are great, but that’s not the goal of this group,” according to a MOMS online post. “This is just a group of moms gathering together to share and learn from each other.”
The website says the group encourages the involvement of moms with various perspectives on life.
“There will be moms who get plenty of sleep and moms who don’t remember what sleep feels like,” according to the website. “Moms who feed their child only organic tofu and moms who count on cheetos and corn dogs. There are moms who stay at home with their children and moms who work outside the home. There are moms who have a flexible day and moms who schedule every second of every day. We’re all different. And we hope to learn from each other.”
According to Heritage Baptist’s covenant, “We commit ourselves to minister to one another and to the community by meeting physical needs, nurturing emotional well-being and fostering spiritual growth and maturity.”
The MOMS program seems to take care of these needs.
“We get together for fellowship, a chance for our children to have playtime with other kids, and to offer each other mutual support for things that we experience in our journeys of motherhood,” Mason said.
MOMS meetings are on the first and third Tuesdays of each month at 9:30 a.m. Mothers with children up to age 5 are welcome to attend the casual MOMS meetings. Childcare is provided for children from ages infant to 5.
For more information on MOMS, contact the Rev. Erin Hall at email@example.com or visit http://hbfmoms.wordpress.com/.