Wednesday, September 20, 2023

So How Can You Tell if Your Church Has a Vision, Passion and Plan For Your Children's Ministry . . . or Not?

We all want to think, and believe, the leaders in our churches understand how vital Children's Ministry is to the overall health of the church; but sadly in far too many churches this is not the case. You can clearly see this when churches add music staff while their Children's Ministries flounder without vision, passion, and a plan. Don't get me wrong; I believe music ministry can be a very effective way for people to use the gifts God has given them and certainly has a role to fill in leading people in praising God, but when 43% of people get saved before the age of 13 and less than 23% get saved after the age of 21 it is obvious how much it matters if our Children's Ministries are one of the primary focuses of the church.

I'm sure there are many "clues" a person might notice if the Children's Ministry in their church is not strong and healthy, but consider the following;

  • Children's Ministry is something which happens primarily out of the view of the church as a whole.
  • Children's Ministry constantly struggles to find volunteers.
  • Children are not making decisions for salvation.
  • Children's Ministry is not growing.
  • Parents/grandparents - and others - do not know what is happening in the Children's Ministry.
  • Children's Ministry is limited to Sunday mornings, mid-week, and a week in the summer for VBS.
  • Everything else comes first.
  • Church leaders can not tell you what the vision, passion, and plan are for the Children's Ministry.
  • Children's Ministry does not focus on also teaching the "whys" - why we are able to believe, not only what we are able to believe.
  • Time is not spent each month by the leaders in the church to be sure the above points do not apply to their church.

Children's Ministry matters. It must hold a place of priority in the church and be something the pastors and leaders care about enough to be sure they know what is happening in their Children's Ministry.

So, what do you do when it is obvious the Children's Ministry does not hold the place of priority it needs to? Difficult question. I believe parents/grandparents - and those who are not parents as well - need to communicate to their church leaders the truth of how the Children's Ministry is important. We can no longer sit back and allow our Children's Ministry to flounder . . . and watch as more children leave the church without knowing what they believe, how it impacts their lives, why they are able to believe, without knowing Jesus personally, and being discipled so they know how to walk with Him. We can not lose more of our children. 

While I'm not advocating for a "mutiny", I do believe it is past time for the church to speak up! Encourage parents and grandparents to communicate with your church leaders so they know what is most important to them when it comes to the church. Help them get involved in your Children's Ministry! If your leaders do not have a vision, passion, and plan for your Children's Ministry, get a group of parents/grandparents together and put something on paper then share it with your leaders. Children's Ministry matters. It must hold a place of priority in the church . . . and when we can see it does not, then steps must be taken to bring about change!

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