I receive several calls and emails asking, “How can I turn around our church’s children’s ministry?” This request comes from the leadership of all size churches. Many are looking for someone, volunteer or part time, to make it happen for the church. Often that one person ends up burning out too soon, so first and foremost, pray for a team. Ask the Lord of the harvest for workers, not a solitary worker. Remember one is usually too small of a number to make a significant difference.
Here are some steps that can help turn children’s ministry in the right direction.
- Communicate the need. When the congregation understands the urgency and importance of a solid and engaging children’s ministry, they begin to adopt the awareness of what is important to the life of the church. When the pastor preaches on the importance of children, it soon becomes important to the listener. Share a simple, but clear vision for what your church’s kid’s ministry can become. Start off with a simple, easy to grasp future; include what your church values in their ministry to kids. This will help the congregation envision what will be the most important concepts for kids’ ministry.
The BIG ask. People respond to a vision from the pulpit that has been highlighted as important and valuable, especially if it’s a team concept. Many will be overwhelmed and decline if they feel it all falls on them. Ask people to be a part of this most valuable team. Team ministry lightens the load and eases the pressure to volunteer.
Equip and appreciate the team. Help team members do what they do best. If they are teachers, train them. If they are running a game night, resource them. Make their ministry easy. My famous saying to my team, “What do you need from me?” Then, appreciate the team in as many ways as possible; I’m still working on this.
Share the win. Do everything you can to show that great ministry has been accomplished. Feature children and kids’ leaders publicly as often as possible. Mention something weekly to the congregation. Remember, that people want to be a part of a winning team. When team members know their ministry matters, they will continue to serve with passion.
Evaluate everything in a positive light. Help the team measure their success in ministry. An easy to understand vision and values will be the goal and guide. Help the team to understand it is never about the individual, it’s about creating a better children’s ministry.
Adapted from the article: Six Steps to Revitalizing Your Children’s Ministry, by Jeremy White, Influence Magazine, September 8, 2017