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9 Priorities of the Children’s Ministry Leader

Priority #5 – Developing leaders

Priority #6 – Growing their team & equipping their leaders

Last week I had the privilege of teaching with Kenny Conley at the Large Church Children’s Ministry Training event in Dallas, hosted by Worlds of Wow. Kenny addressed the idea of leading “across” and “up”, while I addressed the idea of leading “down”.

Here’s the basic premise of what I said:

  • IF . . . “everything rises & falls on leadership” (John Maxwell’s well-known quote) . . .
  • THEN . . . my ministry will only rise to the level that I & my leaders can take it . . .
  • SO . . . my highest priority as the key leader (once priorities 1 & 2, and 3 & 4 are taken care of) is to shape leadership. 


The question then becomes “How do I shape quality leaders”?

I believe it is through the 2-lane track of equipping & developing leaders. That’s why we’re looking at priorities 5 & 6 together…you can’t really separate equipping & developing. Of course, you have to have leaders in order to equip & develop them (what we often call “recruiting”), but we’ve addressed that many times so I’ll let you look up those posts separately (just put “recruiting” in the search box in the upper left of the page to find some of those posts).

So how do we “equip & develop” quality leaders? 

1. Realize that, because it involves people, it looks different in every church & in every situation, but the fundamental elements are the same. 

2. Understand the basic differences between equipping & developing. 

3. Apply the “Quality Leaders” formula: 

Looks complicated, doesn’t it? It’s actually pretty easy to understand . . . but very difficult to apply. Shaping Quality Leaders is one of the most challenging & time consuming responsibilities of the children’s or family ministry leaders. This is why, I believe, we tend to focus on the “tasks” of our role instead of shaping leaders – you can’t “check off” that you’re done shaping leaders.

Anyway, here’s what the equation stands for:

Intentional Equipping plus Proactive Development over Time, multiplied by God
equals Quality Leaders