Category Archives: Planning

Planning for the New Year

Strategic Planning Showing Organizational Business Solutions Or GoalsSome children’s pastors and churches plan for their year in January. Others do it in September. Even if you’re a September planner, it’s a good idea to re-evaluate your plans in January. Here’s some tips for planning your year.

Pray. God knows what He wants to accomplish this year through you in your children’s ministry. The most effective ministers follow God’s plan.

Decide your emphasis. You can’t do everything well in one year even if you have elements of various things, so it’s a good idea to emphasis one thing a year. Here’s some themes you may want to choose from:

Evangelizing and Outreach: Plan events to reach out into the community. Have salvation messages in Children’s Church. After you’re sure your students are saved, teach the how to witness to their friends. Have special Fun Sundays to give your students opportunities and incentives to invite their friends to church.

Discipleship: This may be the year you decide to emphasis discipleship to your students. Teach them the importance of learning Biblical principles. Take time to teach children to pray, and have special prayer meetings for children. Also take time to equip you children to do ministry.

Benevolence: You may decide to focus on benevolence this year. Have your children collect food and coats for the poor. Do fundraisers to provide toys for children at Christmas. Take your students to nursing homes to minister. Or you may want to teach your students about missions and give the a missions project to work at.

Worship: Worship is an important part of the Christian life. What better way to start the year than to help students focus on worshipping God with their lives and learning to offer a sacrifice of praise.

Develop Your Team: An important part of an effective children’s ministry is teamwork. Many children’s pastors have a hard time finding workers. If this is true with you, you may want to spend this year developing a team. This link has some tips for recruitment.

Decide What to Teach. Once you’ve decided your theme for the year, decide what you’re going to teach the children. Much of it should be related to the theme. Plan which lessons to teach throughout the year.

Plan Events with a Purpose: Each event you plan during the year should have a purpose. Keep the theme for the year in mind as you plan events. Here’s a link to help.

Decide how to finance your ministry. Now that you have a plan, you need to decide how to finance your plan. Most churches have some kind of budget for children’s ministry. Talk to your pastor about it. If the budget isn’t sufficient, you may have to resort to fundraisers or have people in your church or local businesses sponsor your events.

Schedule your Calendar. Don’t just add the events to your calendar, add things you have to do leading up to events. Give yourself plenty of planning time in case there is an emergency. Here’s a post about planning systems.

 

Resolutions for Children’s Pastor – #5 Create a Policy Manual

Strategic Planning Showing Organizational Business Solutions Or GoalsA policy manual is something every church should have, but few follow through on this. Here are some good reasons to have a policy manual.

Worker Qualifications:

If you settle for any warm body to work in your children’s ministry, it will cause you more problems than lack of workers. Set the bar higher for those who will minister to the children in your church, and you’ll attract quality people. This goes against the grain, but it works. If you don’t believe me, try it for one year. Let the congregation know only those who meet the qualifications need apply. Mention that you’re doing this because you want only the best working with the children, and see what happens.

One qualification should be that only those who are fully devoted Christ followers can work in children’s ministry. No matter what, don’t compromise on this. Someone who is a carnal Christian or who plays games with Christianity is not someone you want your students looking up to as role models.

Other qualifications can include church membership, water baptism, devotional life, screening, and mandatory teacher training.

Health:

It’s so much easier to tell a parent whose bringing a child with a 103° fever into your class that you can’t accept the child if you have a written church policy in place. Parents can handle you saying you have to follow the church policy rather than you don’t want their child there.

Safety:

Safety policies need to be in place. These include teacher/student ratios for each age group. If a teacher has too many student to handle, with a policy in place, she can alert an usher who knows what to do.

Another good policy that is needed is what to do with restroom breaks. No child should wander around the church hallways unsupervised. For nursery, you’ll want policies for how to change a diaper. Rubber gloves and a bleach spray bottle should be standard for every church nursery.

One of the most important policies to have in place is how we release children to adults. It used to be we could just let the children go when church was out. That’s no longer the case. With so many divorces and estranged parent, not to mention predators, we need to be careful how we do this.

Parents:

Attracting parents is a great reason to have a policy manual. Parents want to know you’re taking care of their children properly. They’re more likely to attend a church they trust with their children.

Church Growth:

You may think you don’t need those policies in place because you’re a small church. It’s easier to put policies in place and get church members use to them while your small. Then you’ll be ready for church growth.

Child Abuse:

Every church needs a written child abuse policy. This isn’t just a good idea. It’s vital to protect your students, your workers, and your church. Here’s some things you’ll need to include.

Screening For Workers: Every worker in your church needs to be interviewed and asked hard questions. They also need to have a background check. Every worker – even Aunt Emma who has been at your church since she was a baby. There’s a reason for that. If your church is ever sued because a worker abuses a child, they’ll ask if all workers have been screened and had a background check. If they have, the suit probably won’t hold up in court.

Report Every Sign of Abuse: Stress this to your workers. It doesn’t matter if they think the child might be accusing someone to get attention or if they think they may be overreacting. That’s not the worker’s call. Child abuse agencies investigate every case and if there’s nothing to it, they don’t mind being put to the trouble. That’s what they’re there for.

Have a policy about how to report possible abuse. That means you either have the worker make the call and report to you what happened or you have the worker come to you and you make the call. Which ever you decide to do, make sure somebody calls the proper agency.

If you don’t know where to start, Revival Fire For Kids has a complete Children’s Ministry Policy Manual download is available to buy for a small price at this link.

The Christmas Program Elephant

The old joke says “How do you eat an elephant?” Of course, the answer is one bite at a time. For children’s pastors, that’s much the same way to plan a Christmas program. Christmas programs are massive undertakings that are better digested one bite at a time.

The first thing you should do is divide the program up in sections. Find workers to take on each of these sections. You don’t have to use people who normally work in children’s ministry. For instance, the person in charge of costumes doesn’t have to be called to minister to children, but she does have to know how to sew. Find somebody who can take care of each area.

Here’s some ways you might divide up your program into bite size pieces.

Choir Director: The choir director teaches the children the songs. You might contact your music director for an idea of who to use.
 
Drama Director: The drama director is in charge of teaching the children the speaking parts.
  
Media Technician: Don’t wait until the last minute to find someone to do the sound, power point, sound effects, and lighting. Have someone from the sound and media department of your church be in charge of this.
 
Costumes: Choose someone to make, buy, or design costumes for your play. Make sure this person knows exactly what you’re looking for.
 
Set Design: Look for a creative person who knows how to draw. This person will be in charge of the set design and decorations.
 
Props: Find a person whose only job is to find the props needed for the play and have them ready for rehearsals and performances. This will take a big load off of you.
 
Party: If you have a dress rehearsal party or cast party, assign someone else to make the plans and provide the refreshments.
 
Backstage Director: This person will be in charge of finding people to help the children in their costumes, get them where they need to be when they need to be there, feeding lines to children from the side stage, and keeping the children occupied while they are waiting for the program to begin. You could have more than one person in charge of these different areas.
 
Stage Director: The stage director is in charge of deciding where the children will stand while they’re doing their parts, where the choir will stand, and where and when everyone will come in. This person will also work with the media director to make sure the children have the right microphones at the right time.
 
For a Christmas program succeed, it needs to be a team effort.

30 Day Ministry Challenge Day 5

 

 30 day ministry challenge logoVision and Mission Statement

Habakkuk 2:2 Then the LORD replied: “Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it.

Today is the day we work on vision and mission statements for our ministries. If you have all ready done this, you’re ahead of the game. Just review your statement and tweak them if you need to.

I’ll start with mine. I’m happy with my mission statement, but my vision statement needs work. It says what I want, but it’s too long. So that’s my challenge for today, to come up with a shorter vision statement.

Revival-Fire-Logo-2Revival Fire 4 Kids Mission Statement: Revival Fire 4 Kids equips children’s pastors and churches to lead children into revival and a radical relationship with Jesus Christ.

Revival Fire 4 Kids Vision Statement: Revival Fire 4 Kids seeks to minister to children, families, churches, and those who minister to children through consulting, teaching, holding children’s revivals, and providing resources. We do this in these four ways.

Revival Fire 4 Kids Children’s Ministry Consultant Services: We go to local churches for two weeks to mentor and coach them as they plan an effective ministry for children.

Children’s Ministry Workshops: We go to local churches and conferences to train children’s teachers and workers.

Fired Up Revivals and Kid’s Crusades: Fired Up Revivals and Kids Crusades are exciting, energetic Children’s Revivals to lead children into the presence of God where they will be fired up to be saved, sanctified, Spirit filled, and serving God.

Resources: Revival Fire 4 Kids seeks to provide resources and curriculum to help your ministry through our blog and our online store.

Strategic Planning Showing Organizational Business Solutions Or GoalsDefinitions: Before you can make a vision statement and a mission statement, you need to understand what they are and how they are different.

Mission Statement: Purpose for existence. Why does your ministry exist? What are your core values? Vision statements may change, but a good mission statement shouldn’t.

Vision Statement: States what the ministry will be doing. How is the ministry going to carry out the mission in the future. This statement may change from time to time.

1227-1013-A1267Practical Help: Books have been written to describe how to make mission and vision statements. I’m not going to go into all the information available out there, but if you need help with your vision and mission statements, here are some online resources:

50 Example of Church Mission Statements

30 Plus Examples of Church Vision Statements

How to Write a Church Mission, Vision, and Values Statement

Take Your Time: Today’s challenge is a starting point. It may take you a while to come up with effective mission and vision statements. You may want to do some reading about them before you complete your statement. Here are a few good books:

The Wilder Non-profit Field Guide to Writing Mission and Vision Statements

How to Create Memorable, Practical Mission, Value, Vision and Business Philosophy Statement for Non-profits

What Next: You could create the greatest mission and vision statements known to man, but if you don’t do anything with them, it’s a waste of time. Here’s the steps you should take after you have these statements.

Write them down on index cards. Then place them on your desk in a clearly visible area. That way, you’ll review the statements often.

Whenever you have an idea for your ministry, compare it with your mission statement. Does your idea reflect what your ministry exists for or is it just a good idea that won’t help your ministry fulfill its purpose.

Memorize your mission and vision statements. That shouldn’t be hard since you’re reviewing the index cards often.

Communicate your mission and vision with your ministry team. Mention it at the beginning of every meeting and correspondence. Encourage them to memorize it.

30 DAY LIFE CHALLENGE (2)30 Day Life Challenge Day 5 

30 Day Ministry Challenge

Time To Plan Messager Shows Organizing Strategy And PlanningFor most people, the new year is a time of reflection. For children’s pastors, it can be a time to plan what’s ahead and evaluate ministry done over the last year. To help you in this process, Revival Fire 4 Kids blog is doing a 30 Day Ministry Challenge. Every day starting January 1st, I will post a challenge to equip you in ministry for the year ahead.

Each week will have a different theme. Here’s the schedule:

  • Week 1 – Relationship with God
  • Week 2 – Improving you and your leadership
  • Week 3 – Connecting with others
  • Week 4 – Organization is Important

I also have another blog, Word Sharpeners, where I’m posting a 30 day life challenge to help you transform your life.

If you’re on Facebook, you can join the event there and fellowship with others taking the challenge. Or you can choose to follow me on both blogs and receive each day’s challenge in your email.

Facebook 30 Day Ministry Challenge

Facebook 30 Day Life Challenge

Have a blessed 2015.

Happy New Year!