India has been on a nationwide lockdown since 25 March 2020 to fight against the COVID 19 pandemic. The impact of this prohibition has been felt across the country on varying degrees. The church has been closed for straight 10 weeks. And it unlikely is opening its doors soon given that Lockdown 4.0 has just begun. In this unprecedented time of pandemic, how are you planning your children ministry?
CONFINED IN LOCKDOWN
With the current stay-at-home order, you probably have been forced to abandon your plan of a VBS, summer camp and other fun activities for kids this summer. All your planning and efforts have undoubtedly disappeared with the arrival of the pandemic. If not for the pandemic, you and your team would have had a wonderful time with the kids in your church. But now, no Sunday school, no summer camp, no VBS, no meetings. Only being confined at home.
You are probably missing the kids in your Sunday School class. VBS songs might be playing in your head as you think about the wellbeing of kids in your church. You also know that the need for social distancing rules out any form of physical social gathering in the near foreseeable future. And this means it may take some time (if not a long time) to get to meet your kids in the church. As leaders, how do you reach out to kids?
CONNECTED IN LOCKDOWN
The pandemic has presented a very significant time for your children ministry. Grab the opportunity to reach out to kids in this unprecedented time. You are called to shepherd the kids as children ministry leaders. Here are few ways you could reach out to kids and show your care for them.
Prayer is absolutely necessary if we want to carry on God’s work properly - E.M.Bounds.
Talk to God about your unique situation. Lead your team with prayer for kids and their families. Pray together along with parents as well. One way to do this is to make a list of kids in your church and assign volunteers to pray for them.
Children ministry leaders must understand that parents are an integral part of the ministry. Have a goal to partner with parents so that you can strategically continue to disciple the children without meeting them physically. The involvement of parents helps learning and growing together in faith, as a family.
Keep in Touch
With physical meetings out of the box, you must turn to an alternative source of communication. One simple way to keep in touch with kids is to make use of the technologies available to us. Meeting them where they are speaks volumes of your care. Have an online presence and make yourself available online for kids to approach you for any concern they might have. Engage with them through relevant posts to help them grow. However, you must take caution to make sure that kids use social media with parental guidance.
Do not Stop Meeting
It is much harder for kids to stay indoors for longer periods of time. They like to meet, socialize, and play with friends. You can compensate the loss of being physically around friends by having an online virtual class, service, or meetings. Zoom, YouTube, Facebook Live, Microsoft Teams are few free video streaming platforms you can make use of. Plan out your meetings or class with lessons and activities that allows for more interaction among the kids and parents.
Making Use of Group Resources
For churches that have used the FaithWeaverNow curriculum, there are activities kids can do with their families at home. Revisit those lessons and let kids emerge themselves in the activities while learning more about God. At Group India, our desire is to partner with churches in reaching out to kids. We would be happy to assist any children ministry leader that require free lessons for kids during this pandemic.
We are All in This Together
If you’re doing your part to practice social distancing, if you’re confined to your home or office, use this valuable time. Keep planning for your life transforming children ministry. The families in your church are counting on you. We bless you for your work and uphold you in our prayers. We are with you. And, most importantly, God is with you, all the way!