So, we made it to the 2013 KidMin Conference! I am so excited to be here!
Friday Morning – Pre-Conference
This morning, I took a Pre-Conference track led by Jim Burns from HomeWord. Jim taught about “Partnering With Parents”. Here are a few highlights:
*When you reach the family, you reach the world.
*One of the major purposes of the church is to mentor parents. Parents then mentor their children, and the legacy of faith continues from generation to generation. There is a 300% chance that high school graduates who have come from homes who’ve regularly engage in faith conversations at home are more likely to not walk away from the faith.
*When you welcome a child, you welcome Jesus (Mark 9:36-37).
*The family, not the church, is the greatest influence in a child’s life.
*Moms are by far the most influential person in a child’s spiritual development. Here’s the breakdown on the top five (5) people, in order, of influence in a child’s spiritual development: (2) Dad, (3) extended family, (4) friends and (5) church.
*Why keeps us from partnering with parents?
- It means more for us.
- We’re insecure – kids are easy, parents not so much.
- We might encounter parental resistance, especially if the child has openly shared things happening in the home.
- We have no say in Adult Education.
- There is conflict with the Senior Pastor.
- Parents don’t have time.
- Parents have different priorities.
- Non-traditional family structures are hard to navigate.
*As Children’s Ministry leaders, we serve parents by providing four primary tasks:
Information (communicate clearly to parents)
- Send parent newsletters.
- Have parent meetings (gather parents for dinner, decadent desserts and information/trainings). Consider having spiritual offerings as well as needs-based offerings).
- Let parents know of seminars, workshops, etc. at nearby churches, hospitals, etc.
Assistance (support the family structure)
- Hold special seminars. Get people in your church who have specialized training to speak to parents – teachers, doctors, therapists, etc.)
- Have a library of parenting resources (books, CDs, podcasts, etc.). If you don’t have a permanent space, have a mobile cart and park it in a highly visible area.
Encouragement (encourage parents)
- Schedule a Parent Recognition Sunday, a special Sunday service where parents are celebrated. Have the kids put a video together, serve lunch or dinner, etc. to honor their parents.
- Write notes of encouragement to parents.
Involvement (parents in your ministry)
- You will always need volunteers. Consider, however, expanding what you need by asking parents to assist with areas they’re gifted – parents who fundraise for a living can help raise $ for mission trips, event planners can help plan events, etc.
- Have a parents counsel to help speak into the ministry.
- Have opportunities for parents and kids to do together.
Friday Night – General Session
The General Session started with awesome worship (this has never disappointed me here at KidMin). Worshiping with other kidmin leaders is always a wonderful experience.
The Session’s keynote was to be delivered by Joni Eareckson Tada but due to illness, she was not able to attend. So, the Skit Guys led the session and did so wonderfully. They spoke on Mark 2:1-12. Here are a few highlights:
*Jesus delights in us bringing people to Him.
*Jesus could have healed the man on the spot but He didn’t. He said his sins were forgiven. We think we know our need but Jesus knows best.
*Ministry doesn’t turn off when we turn off the lights.
*God has called us to put people on the mat and lead them to Jesus.
I am looking forward to more learning, laughs and encouragement tomorrow!