About the Children’s Department: Two VERY BIG THINGS

For the past few weeks I’ve been writing about 14 things to be aware of which if they are part of your Children’s Ministry, you are “blowing it”. Today I want to write about one more. This one is a “biggie”. This one is over-looked, discounted, and just not even cared about in far, far too many churches. What is this big thing? Well, it is actually two VERY BIG THINGS – a boring Children’s Ministry and Grandparents who feel alone.

Now, you might read this and think, “Wait a minute. Our Children’s Ministry is great and I don’t lead/work in a Senior Saint’s Ministry. I’m involved with the Children’s Ministry.” and then you may not even read the rest of this post. I assure you, this post is for you who serve in Children’s Ministry – and for all other leaders in your church as well.

More and more children are being brought to your Children’s Ministry by their grandparents. I write often about how more and more parents are walking away from the church. Some of these parents do not allow their parents to take the children to church, but some do . . . IF, and is a really big IF, the children want to go.

In most of these cases by the time the children reach the third or fourth grade they no longer want to go to church. These grandparents feel totally alone. They feel like huge failures – their grown child turned away from the faith, so they clearly didn’t do what they needed to do to hand down confident faith. If they failed so miserably with their grown children by doing what they knew to do, they think they have no hope of handing confident faith to their grandchildren. Especially since their own faith at this time feels the opposite of confident.

I have had many grandparents share this story with me over the years. It is happening in every church – and will continue to happen over and over again until those who lead their Children’s Ministries do two things.

First – STOP BORING CHILDREN. When you bore children at church, they end up thinking the Bible, church, and Jesus are boring – why would they choose to be involved with something which is so boring? It is EXTREMELY difficult to get past “boring” with children. Once they decide something is boring, they are done with it if they are able to make this choice. 

If you honestly look at your ministry and see those children who come only IF they choose to come are no longer doing so, then it is safe to say you likely have a boring Children’s Ministry. How dare you present the Bible and Jesus as boring! There is a HUGE cost to pay when you do this. The Bible and Jesus are NOT boring and we have no right to make our Children’s Ministry boring. So, STOP BORING CHILDREN. I will write about how to do this over the coming days, so stay tuned.

Secondly, don’t leave these grandparents feeling alone and as if the church doesn’t really care. It is most likely many, if not all of these grandparents are not yet retired – which means they are NOT part of your Senior Saints Ministry. Start a Grandparenting Ministry – again, this is NOT a Senior Saints Ministry. A Senior Saints Ministry is about fellowship and community. A Grandparenting Ministry is about equipping grandparents so they know how to hand down confident faith and it is about supporting and encouraging those who travel the extremely painful road of watching as their grown children and/or grandchildren turn away from the faith.

So where does your Children’s Ministry (and church) stand on this really BIG thing? Take an honest look. Talk with grandparents and ask them to be honest with you. Don’t be defensive. Be willing to consider what you need to do about this VERY BIG thing in your ministry.


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