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But I Have A Full Time Job!

This is a message for the volunteer living a big life; How to run a kids ministry in 4 hours a week.

At Hillsong Church we have services ranging from maybe 10 kids all the way through to 700 kids in one service. On top of this we have full time staff members that are focused 7 days a week on children’s ministry as well as volunteer Pastors that oversee age groups on top of their normal day to day commitments.  A large part of our role is training people to be able to do more with less and enable them to have a large influence despite their seeming lack of time.

So myself and Nathan Mclean got our heads together and decided to put together our thoughts on what we would do if we weren’t full time at a Church and were running a children’s ministry with a full time job and maybe only 4 hours a week to make Church happen!

So watch the video, we truly believe it can help you!

VIDEO NOTES:

  • Hour 1. Leadership
  • Hour 2. Program
  • Hour 3. Pastoral
  • Hour 4. Prayer/Communication

Take an hour each week to focus on LEADERSHIP. This is the people part of your team, the delegating and getting things ready part of the team.

This could look like a key team meeting, which forms the basis of how we do what we do at Hillsong Kids.

Spend an hour getting your PROGRAM  ready. Writing your message, preparing runsheets for the service,

Do not neglect the midweek PASTORING. Visit the hospital (vital and an incredible opportunity), make the calls, pray with your families.

And remember, its all for naught if Jesus isn’t in the centre. Keep the main thing, the main thing, and PRAY. You are the chief COMMUNICATOR, there should be no-one more passionate about reaching the kids and families of your Church. So get the word out and make sure your team has everything they need to fulfil their mission!

Of course, you are not a lone ranger, every other person you involve in ministry creates a exponential reach. So build that team!

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I Say Quite a Lot in This Video

So back last year I filmed an interview with the esteemable Luke Harris all about Curriculum and Kids Ministry. Just watched is back recently. I said some good things, you should check it out!

Creative Curriculum Writing (With David Wakerley)

P.S. There is actually a bunch of great resources on this channel that you should watch from some great people in ministry, like Frank Bealer from Elevation Church, Craig Johnson from Lakewood Church and a bunch of Aussies like Andy Kirk, Tammy Tolman and Sean W Smith.

INC Pastoral Resources

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The Ultimate Kidmin Conference Cheat Sheet

I spent a very quick few days in Columbus Ohio last week speaking at the Kidmin conference. Apart from feeling the jet lag a little more than in the past I found myself in a brand new conference experience put on by Group Publishing.

The amount of training that happens is astonishing in it’s variety and sheer volume requiring a telephone book sized yellow sheet just to recap all the topics and sessions! So with that in mind, here are some tips to help you survive the experience.

1: Find a friend and organise a buddy system. Perhaps you could create code names for each other like ‘Alpha Moon’, ‘Tomato Bob’ or ‘Larry Cucumber’ that you can yell out in an emergency. Here I have pictured two men doing just that. Wayne Stocks from Dad in the Middle Blog and Michael Chanley from CMConnect are now establishing contact with each other and assigning codes… I believe Michael went for ‘Louisville Kitty’.

ohio-chanley

2. Find people with similar hairlines to your own. This is myself and Steve Adams from Saddleback Kids very relieved to have found each other and realising that both our hairlines have seen better days. Steve has teenagers and so has progressed towards complete cue ball faster than me, but I have no doubt that I will catch him up at some point. You can just make out Michael Chanley photobombing at the back still nervously looking.

adams-wakerley

3. Get your selfie on with a guy in a mohawk. Jeff from JumpStart3 was an ever present presence in the resource area and a guy with big dreams and the guts the go after them. Which brings me to the guy on my left.

kidmin_dave_tim_jeff

4. Bring along the legend that runs Hillsong Music. We just recently released Faith, Hope and Love a 9 week curriculum for both Preschool and Primary/Elementary and it’s awesome (I haven’t really mentioned it on the blog strangely). Tim Whincop and Josh Olson both were with me and made the Hillsong Kids stand happen.

IMG_3720

There were many moments that happened at Kidmin conference meeting people like Wayne Stocks and Gina McClain both bloggers who I have been following for a long time! Meeting Christine Yount Jones the editor of Children’s Ministry Magazine and seeing her enthusiasm for helping leaders in kidmin. I did want to catch Dale Hudson who writes probably the most consistent kidmin blog there is and I did see Anthony Prince in passing at some point. But next time I do this I think a blogger meetup would be in order!

Thanks Kidmin, we had a great time!

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Kidshaper Conference Highlights

Kidshaper conference was a fantastic event in August.

We try and get as many of our team to attend as possible knowing that it will be a time where we get to be inspired, encouraged and perhaps most importantly hang out together without the pressure of task and ministry.

Andy Kirk is a champion with a very special place in my heart. His rebranding of the event makes me happy, his passion for ministry makes me happy, his innovation and the inner workings of his brain make me happy.

He is an absolute gift to the ACC in Australia. In short, when he asks me to jump, I ask how high? 

Kidshaper 2014 Highlights from ACC Kids on Vimeo.

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What Christianity Today had to say about your salary

The Gleanings blog from Christianity Today is a insightful blog and if you are hankering for a recap of the latest controversy in the Church world, it delivers. It’s no TMZ, but I guess nothing brings in readers like a little intrigue.

But check out this quote from the article How 727 Megachurches Spend Their Money

In research director Warren Bird’s Q&A with William Vanderbloemen at the conclusion of the study, the hiring expert suggests that churches should consider children’s ministry as a key strategy for growing their congregation. Vanderbloemen said:

The most strategic churches we work with are realizing that a premier children’s pastor/leader can become one of, if not the largest growth engines for the church. And such churches are paying accordingly. We are seeing an increasing trend of churches who pay the top person over children’s ministry more and more. In some cases, the children’s pastor is one of the top paid people on staff, higher than the student pastor, worship pastor or small groups pastor.

Now any study that suggests that salary solution needs a closer look for sure! 🙂

There is a lot more helpful information to be found in the report, check it out!

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Christian Education?

Help me out here.

I keep seeing the phrase Christian Education when people are talking about ministry. It’s mentioned in the same breath as Sunday School, or classrooms and curriculum and other words that seem to be borrowed from academia.

Is this something to aspire to?

In my brain we are trying to be the Church to the world. Putting the banner of Christian Education overhead seems to really ‘muddy the waters’ of what we are trying to achieve.

Or am I missing something?

 

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This is what makes me cry…

This is one short video but a very powerful one!

Whether it’s Finding Nemo, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, The Lion King, father and son movies get me right in the heart area. A powerful reminder of the emotions many of the kids that come into our Churches will be feeling,  if they are experiencing the pain of separation or divorce.

Men in ministry, use your voice to encourage and build up boys this weekend. They may remember it for the rest of their lives.

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Four kidmin leadership panels you should watch today

Andy Kirk is a champion.

Full stop.

I don’t know how he does it… family, ministry, entrepreneur…

But he does it and he does it well.

He oversees Kids R Us in Australia here and I think you should get to know him, connect with him, and at some point meet him and ask him questions! A good place to do that is at the annual Kidshaper conference.

He got together myself, Nathan Mclean and a few legends from Australia to talk about #kidmin and leadership etc. for a panel discussion. I love this style of learning and leadership and I think you should watch them! I just rewatched them and it reminded me of so much and kept me thinking about the things that are important!

You can find them in the resources tab at the KidsRUs website. Or head over to their Vimeo Account for more!

Kids R Us – Leadership Panel – Session 1 from Kids R Us on Vimeo.
 

 

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First ever post

In Nov 2004 this was the first post I wrote on this new blog.

It was short and not very deep but it’s still relevant!

 

WE HAVE THE ANSWER

We (the church) – have the answer, we may not be perfect or even close but we know someone who is perfect.

We have the answer!

I may feel inadequate when a child misbehaves or is going through a tough time.

I may feel like I have nothing to give – but we do – do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded (Heb 10:35)

We actually have the answer!

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Kidsong Big Messages

At Kidsong 2013 this year we have a number of ‘Big Message’ Videos that cover the topics we are investigating for the week.

They follow a similar style to our Big Curriculum resources, but on a smaller budget (as in $0, although I bought a bunch of whiteboard markers and some McDonalds at one point).

Firstly our Primary/Elementary ages:

The format is:

  • Intro segment (short and the same for every video)
  • ‘Draw my life’ style (main story/fun overview)
  • Wrap up (summarise the main point of the episode)

This is not meant to be a full exposition on scripture but fulfils three main goals:

  1. Gives the kids a shared media experience (unity)
  2. Sets up the speaker/preacher
  3. Hopefully gets a laugh (when you’re laughing you’re learning)

Secondly our Jr/preschool-ish ages:

The format is very simple and the language/style is perhaps modelled on the ‘tone’ of Playschool (preschool TV show in Australia).

Similar goals, but not as much humour. If you want to get a laugh with this age group you need slapstick!