I have the privilege of working part-time at our church as a children's ministry coordinator. While serving as a lead pastor in Spain, a particular approach to children's faith formation influenced my approach to pastoring greatly. Through a quieter, gentler faith-formation process I discovered principles that we adults would do well to take on-board ourselves. I'm sure I could easily list 100 ways kids ministry has benefited me personally but, off the top of my head, here are 11 truths. Which one of these resonate with you? Please share! I'd love to hear from you. -Troy
11 Things I Learned From Being A Minister To Children
11. Repetition is good.
10. Hurry ain’t helpful.
9. Character is formed in community.
8. We need more wonder so we need to wonder more.
7. Listening takes practice. And silence.
6. These words are mysteriously linked: food, friendship, praise and prayer.
5. There’s no avoiding thresholds. Passage-ways often find us before we find them so move from one space to another in a spirit of reverence. Something special is waiting on the other side.
4. Values are more caught than taught. Stories teach more than propositions—and I have a story about that. You have a story about that, too.
3. Be gentle.
2. We receive the kingdom of God only if we have the faith of a child.
Over the years I've conducted introductions and training in this kind of children's ministry. If you or someone you know would like an introduction to this method, let me know. I'd love to be of help in any way I can! Also, be on the lookout for a series we're developing called PlayFull Faith. The series contains story-scripts and creative objects from 12 key Bible stories that can be used with children or in intergenerational settings. Each story is designed to help participants wonder about themes of joy, play, freedom and hope--among other topics. Write me to ask about any of these. I'd love to talk with you! -Troy
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