Archives For family ministry

Wise kidmin leaders know that volunteers are the heartbeat of our ministries.  We simply cannot do ministry without them.  Celebrating these faithful servants should happen regularly throughout the year but Valentine’s Day is a great time to shower them with love.

This year, our team selected this flip book from Christian Tools of Affirmation (CTA) to show our volunteers how much we appreciate them.  We’ll have them available each week throughout the month of February (some of our volunteers only serve once a month, so we didn’t want to overlook anyone.)

In addition, we will do other special appreciation gestures such as special sweet treats and a hot chocolate bar throughout the month of February.

If you’re undecided on how to honor your ministry volunteers this Valentine’s Day, you still have time to pull together a small token of appreciation.  Pinterest is a great place to find ideas.  To help you out, here are a few of my favorite ideas from the popular website.  Most are relatively inexpensive and easy to assemble.

From iheartnaptime

Valentine Treats - Starburst

From Orange Blogs

From gift cards, to plants, to food & candy, these 10 ideas are easy, heartfelt and budget-friendly.

Valentine Treat - Orange Blogs

Additional ideas from Orange can be round here.

From LifeWay Kids Ministry 101

Five free printable labels to accompany various pre-packaged candies.

Valentine Treats - labels

From Love The Day

If your volunteers love donut holes as much as ours do, you’ll definitely want this printable to attach to the sweet treats.

Valentine Treats - Donut Hole printable

From hersheys.com

Who doesn’t love chocolate from Valentine’s Day?  Collect small fabric bags with ribbon drawstrings. Let your students fill each bag with chocolate Hershey Hearts and pull the drawstring (or tie the bag with a ribbon). Have the children make small cards that say, “Hugs to you, our wonderful volunteer.” Punch a hole in the corner of each card. Help the child tie the card to the ribbon. Present the candy bags to your volunteers with a word of thanks.

Valentine Treats - Hersheys

From Group Publishing

This keepsake book for volunteers and teachers weaves encouragement, uplifting Scripture, real stories, and more into a gift that’ll warm their souls—and help keep their enthusiasm for introducing kids to Jesus going strong.

Valentine Treats - Group Pub Book

For even more ideas, be sure to check out my Valentine’s Pinterest Board!

How are you celebrating your volunteers for Valentine’s Day?  Let me know by leaving a comment below or on our Facebook page!

For the past several months, our Family Ministry staff team has met to brainstorm and process what Family Ministry could look like at our church.  Two key elements that remain at the center of our discussions are (1) we believe that parents should be the primary influence in their children’s lives and (2) our role as a church is to come alongside families and equip them to be that primary spiritual influence through intentional programming and resources.

Be Kids logo

I recently took a look at materials from Be:Kids, a fairly new organization that provides free family devotions to use throughout the week to encourage parents to be involved in discipleship within the home.  Be:Kids co-founder Meredith Chapuis asked me to take a look at the free resources that they provide for this purpose.

According to their website, Be:Kids’ mission is to partner with the collective church to raise up the future generation of leaders in our community and around the world by cultivating character and confidence in Christ. To teach children to walk in the light of the truth, be rooted deeply in love, encourage each other, embrace their individuality, and to seek God’s will above all else.  Their three goals are:

  • Equip and Empower Parents To Live On Mission;
  • Invade Communities With Love; and
  • Make A Generational Change In Society

There are a few facets to their ministry that I love:

Be: Inspired (Blog)

Their blog encourages parents with scripture, reminders about what’s important and prayers.  They also feature real families who share their stories of discipling their children.

Be: Intentional (Devotions)

Each week, a new family devotional plan is published.  Included are:

  • The week’s ‘focus’
  • A memory verse
  • Lunch box notes
  • Conversation starters
  • An application activity
  • Scripture passages, brief devotional and prayer

What I love is the action plan that comes with the weekly devotional.  Sometimes parents who desire to lead a devotional time with their children don’t always know how to do it.  And the printable lunch box notes look amazing!

#Be Box

BE-BOX-AD

 

Click the #Be Box image above to take a peek at what was included in January’s box.

Check out the resources for yourself & tell them Kathie sent ya!  You can also connect with Be:Kids to stay informed of new resources when they become available.

Website:  http://bekidsmobile.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BEKIDSMOBILE

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BEKIDSMOBILE

Instagram: http://instagram.com/bekidsmobile

Photo Credit: mattmo.org

Photo Credit: mattmo.org

I love my job.  I really do.  But sometimes, in the busyness of making sure that a million details are covered, I can oftentimes forget that families in my church community walk through our church doors carrying some pretty heavy burdens.  I was reminded of that this past weekend.  One family is facing a health crisis while another family is adjusting to new, temporary living arrangements.

My heart breaks for these two precious families.  I wish I had the ‘right’ words to say, other than, “Tell me how I can pray for you.”  But it dawned on me…praying for these families is one of the greatest gifts I can give to these sweet families and the other families I serve.

“Partnering with parents” is a popular phrase tossed around in the kidmin world.  Google it – you’ll see more than 600,000 results!  You’ll see the phrase on websites, in vision and mission statements, listed in an organization’s core values, just to name a few.  But what does it really mean to partner with parents?

This past weekend, I was reminded that partnering with parents begins with a relationship.  Do you take the time to stop and chat with the families in your ministry during weekend services?  Are you even available to make this happen?  Position yourself in visible places in your children’s areas to get to know your families.  Listen to them – really listen.  What are they saying?  What are they NOT saying?

Partnering with parents means regularly communicating with them.  Has a child or family missed several weeks of church?  Has someone been sick?  Is someone dealing with an extended time of crisis – unemployment, illness, new living situation?  Reach out to them with a phone call, email, note in the mail, or text message.  Meet them for coffee.

Partnering with parents means coming alongside them in prayer.  When you say you’ll pray for someone, mean it – then do it.  Pray for them specifically by name.  Then follow-up with them.  I have begun to add this to our weekly staff meeting agenda.  It’s that serious.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of ways a kidmin can partner with parents.  But think about it.

Build relationships.

Regularly communicate with them.

Pray with them (and for them).

Keep the conversation going by adding your two cents!  What ways do you effectively partner with parents?