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Van Ministry: 10 Tips for Getting Your KidMin Bus Rolling

4. Enlist and train workers.

Sunday school teachers, children’s worship leaders, ushers, kitchen volunteers and bus personnel all will need to know what to expect when the van ministry begins.

5. Plan for more.

As the bus ministry grows, so will your need for larger facilities, more volunteers and more funding. Plan ahead!

6. Develop the Saturday schedule.

If you run buses on Sunday mornings, have a short meeting on Saturday morning and visit riders. As the van ministry progresses, you may find a better time to meet and visit the routes.

7. Develop the Sunday schedule.

What time will children along the routes be picked up? When the vehicle arrives, what will children do and where will they go? Will they stay for both Sunday School and worship? Do you need someone to meet the bus and escort kids to and from class? Make sure every person on the team knows the times and procedures for unloading and loading, as well as what classes the children go to and where classrooms are located.

8. Establish the routes.

Decide where you want to run your routes, and then design them by time rather than distance. Most churches find it’s best to have less than one hour from the time the first rider is picked up until you reach the church. This will be trial-and-error at first, but you’ll soon discover the ideal timing and schedule.

9. Hold a kickoff meeting.

Invite everyone who will serve the riders to this kickoff. Plan a creative way to review the ministry’s vision and purpose, and inform everyone of the first visitation and pickup schedules. If possible, provide everyone on the team with some type of logo-wear, such as a hat, T-shirt or visor.

10.  Launch the ministry!

Bonus Tips: Build Relationships on the Bus

Traveling to and from church with children is a great time to build relationships, teach spiritual truths and have fun! If kids have a good time while riding, they’ll want to return next week.

Try these activities with kids who participate in your church’s van ministry:

  • Singing
  • Bible quizzes and memory verse games
  • Silly face contest
  • Bubble gum blowing content (see who can blow the biggest bubble; gum must stay in mouths)

Bus Rules: Your Van Ministry Needs Them!

The bus ride to and from church must be safe, relational and fun. So establish and consistently enforce rules. Here are some suggestions:

  • Keep heads and hands inside.
  • Stay seated.
  • Talk in a normal voice and use nice words.
  • Keep hands to yourself.
  • Everyone participates in activities.
  • Everyone attends Sunday school and children’s worship.

Want more tips? Download Pastor Dave Smith’s free 112-page manual “The Soul-Winning Bus Ministry” here.

This article originally appeared here.