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The New Look of Children's Ministry

As we continue to walk through this pandemic, we must ask ourselves...

What do we need to change in this new day of ministry?

How is our ministry going to be different moving forward?

Will kids and families come back to church?

How can we better serve the children and families that are struggling in our community?

Will things ever return to "normal?"

Will our ministry survive financially?

Here are a few of the new realities:

There will be more online kids' services. Before the pandemic hit, I only knew of 2-3 churches that offered online children's ministry services. Now basically every church I know does an online service for kids. As I talk with children's ministry people around the country, they are telling me they will continue to offer digital content for kids and their parents even after the pandemic. Will this be something that is a given in children's ministry in the future?

Fewer kids and parents are going to return to in-person church services. Studies show that church membership is declining among Millennials and Gen Zer's. 10% of all Americans see the church as irrelevant. These trends have been magnified by the pandemic. 31% of pastors believe their church attendance will have declined once the crisis is over.

Another area that is being impacted is church's finances.

While some ministries have been able to maintain their budget, many more have not. When your ministry depends on tithes and offerings, it can bring things to a halt.

58% of pastors feel very confident that their church will survive the disruption due to giving challenges.

It is predicted that 1 in 5 churches will close their doors before this is over. Wow!

That means 1 in 5 children's ministries will also close their doors before this is over.

But I see many wins and positive steps that can come out of this. Remember, God can take anything and turn it into something good.

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." (Romans 8:28)

Is it a good thing the virus came? No, of course not.

But...God can take the situation and use it for something good.

Some good things that can come from this...

An opportunity to make changes that can help the ministry operate at a high level. People are open to change during this season.

Reaching kids online with the Gospel. What excites me about this? Jesus told us this in Mark 16:15.

He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation."

Online church services for kids gives you the opportunity to fulfill the mission Jesus has given us. You can literally carry the Gospel to the entire world using technology.

We have lots of opportunities to be the hands and feet of Jesus to the kids and families in our communities. Families are hurting. Parents have lost their job. High school seniors have had to spend their senior year at home. Family members and friends have gotten sick and some have even died.

We can try new ways to stay connected with kids and families. I have seen churches use very creative ideas to stay connected to the kids in their church.

Some have driven by the houses of kids and given them an air high five or social distance hug.

Some have put together a VBS kit that they can drive through and pick up at church. They can then have their VBS at home.

Some have hosted a movie night (with social distancing and other safety measures).

Some have done Zoom calls for the parents and kids together.

No matter where you find yourself today, know that God is there. He is at work. He has some big impact plans He is going to send your way. Walk by faith. Trust Him. Minister in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Your turn.

What does your ministry look like in this time?

What are some things you've done to stay connected to the kids?

What resources are you putting in the hands of parents these days?

Are you doing online services? Will you continue these once everything is "normal?"

What are some more ideas you have been thinking about or trying?

We'd love to see your thoughts and ideas in the comment section below.

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