Praise the Lord that life is beginning to get back to normal in most places in the United States. As vaccine rates rise and new CDC recommendations emerge, restrictions are loosening and reopening is more common. Many children’s ministries have been open for months and some are just starting to meet in person.
Wherever your church falls in that spectrum, I can assure you of one common need. Your church and your church’s kids need you to step up.
I know you’re busy. Maybe your kids are grown and you feel it is not your turn anymore. Maybe you decided long ago that children’s ministry just wasn’t your thing. Perhaps you have kids of your own and you want a break on Sundays. I get all of that. For 20 years I’ve talked to church members who said those same things.
But this season is different.
We are coming back from something our modern day ministries have never encountered before. It has been a terrible challenge, but at the same time I know God is doing amazing things in the lives of His people and His churches.
Our church returned with a fresh vigor and anticipation of God moving. And He has been. But as I work with our own leadership and as I counsel children’s ministers in different parts of the country, I am realizing that our children’s ministry leaders need you more than they ever have before.
How is it different now?
Here are five ways things are different now.
Not everyone came back.
Many long term volunteers haven’t come back and many won’t. Many were senior adults who were cautious. They are just now coming out of staying at home and are not prepared to be in a room full of children. Many members made a transition during the pandemic and aren’t returning to your church at all.
Your leaders are exhausted and burning out.
When churches had to close, your children’s ministry leaders had to immediately switch gears and figure out how to serve families from afar. Next, they had to figure out how to reopen with a boatload of conflicting and confusing information. No matter what decisions they made, they lived with the burden of anticipating a call that someone had exposed others to COVID. They have had to essentially rebuild their volunteer force from scratch. And they are tired. Really, really tired. They need you.