Nov 7, 2013

3 Trends You Need to Know to Remain Effective in Children's Ministry

Barna recently reported on 3 trends that are redefining the information age we are living in.

These have big implications on how we communicate with kids and parents.

1. People feel modern life is accelerating and becoming more complex.
In children and family ministry, I see this reflected in families' life rhythm.  Because of their busy, hectic lives, families attend church less frequently.  In many congregations, the average family attends 1-2 times a month.

Effective children's ministries will find ways to...
  • minister to families who attend less frequently
  • help families move from hectic to balanced
  • move families back into a healthy rythm of church attendance
2. People want to stay informed, but due to so much information, they skim content.
Families want to be informed and there is clearly plenty of information available.  Every year, there is more and more content being thrown at them.  In fact, there is so much information that families feel overwhelmed and limited in how much they can intake. 

Get used to hearing those words - "It's too long."  Parents want short, concise information.

As you communicate with kids and families, remember to...
  • Say it short
  • Show it short
  • Communicate it short
  • Teach it short.
The more compact and precise your information, the better your chance of it getting read and remembered.

3. People want more than mere facts and information.  They want to integrate their faith into everyday life.
Effective children and family ministries must teach not just information, but life application. Teaching must move beyond just the facts to challenging kids and families to live out the truth in their everyday lives.

Head knowledge simply isn't enough.  Helping kids and families to not compartmentalize their lives is a must. 

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