children's ministry Archives - Church Executive


Is your facility too hot, too cold, or just right?

By Rebecca Calbert, AIA, LEED AP, NCARB As an architect, I notice my surroundings more than the “average bear.” And lately, trends in youth ministry interior design bring to mind Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Some spaces are too hot, some are too cold, and some are just right. I’ve seen church facilities take a […]

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Background check red flags: what to watch for, what they indicate — and what to do if they arise

Ministries need to be aware that even the best applicant on paper might not seem so squeaky clean after a background check. It’s important that church leaders have a standardized policy when it comes to identifying “red flags” that will disqualify someone from employment or volunteer positions. Even red flags such as behavior or character traits need to be thoughtfully weighed as they could expose the church to increased risk.

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Time to re-screen? Best practices for the long term

A Virginia church is at the center of every congregation’s worst nightmare: One of its former volunteers is accused of sexually abusing several children he met through the church.

The worst part is that these newest charges come six years after similar allegations plagued the man and the church.

Once a clean record, not always a clean a record.

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Protecting children in the church: background check myths

Background screening employees and volunteers is the most effective tool for keeping congregations safe. Yet, most ministries make major mistakes when implementing background check procedures.

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An effective worship space for kids is no small feat

Preschool and children’s spaces are the most unique of all worship spaces, in my opinion. They must capture these special worshippers and hold their attention while also supporting the worship leaders. Even with younger ages in attendance and shorter “sermons,” these services are no less significant.

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Appropriate boundaries for a healthy relationship with children

We frequently ask ourselves questions such as, “What’s an acceptable way to show affection to youth in my care?” or “How should I react if a child runs up for a hug?”
These are important questions, because boundaries promote a lifetime of healthy relationships.

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Safety Strategies: Playing it safe

Accidents and injuries were almost a given, accepted as an inevitable part of life. Even during a span of eight years of the 21st century, more than 200,000 children were treated in emergency rooms each year for playground-related injuries.

But these times, they are a changin’ — and passively accepting that kids are destined to get hurt on a playground no longer should be the case. The jungle gyms and merry-go-rounds from yesteryear have been replaced with equipment that has been built with safety in mind.

And while injuries and accidents cannot be completely prevented, there is much one can do to help keep playgrounds as safe as possible.

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Engaging children’s ministry spaces: 4 essential elements

My earliest memories of Sunday school involve walking (in very uncomfortable shoes) into an old, dimly lit gymnasium and turning down a white-painted corridor. There, I entered a white-painted classroom. There were no windows and a hodgepodge of furniture.
The most memorable thing about my Sunday school room was a small, white plastic bank shaped like a church that sat on a table by the door. Here, everyone dropped in their nickel offerings as they entered class each week.
Today, that same church has an entire building devoted to children’s ministry.

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Unregulated security solutions pose danger to schools

Schools are facing increasing pressure from school boards, parents and communities to address security vulnerabilities. That pressure is ramped up every time there is a school shooting.

In many ways, this pressure is a positive catalyst that nudges schools to take steps to reduce their safety and security risks. However, as with
most kinds of pressure, it can lead administrators to make desperate moves in order to appease stakeholders, especially when faced with significant obstacles like funding.

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Florida church’s “Back to School” mission project fills hundreds of backpacks for local students

First Presbyterian Church of Fort Lauderdale’s children’s ministry “Back to School” mission project collects hundreds of filled backpacks for local students

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