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Cradle Care Ministry: How Your Church Can Welcome Babies & Families

Preschool Director’s Commitment:

    • Recruit and train caregivers
    • Receive care recipient information and maintain database
    • Assign care recipients to caregivers
    • Assist caregivers in meeting unique needs
    • Create agenda and lead monthly CC team meetings/trainings
    • Assist caregiver team w/ministry events (semi-annual dinner)
    • Maintain Cradle Care bulletin board
    • Network across church staff and with other ministries to help CC team facilitate connections as care recipients’ needs arise (e.g. pastoral care needs, special needs ministry, etc.)

Caregiver Job Description:

    • Attend monthly meetings
    • Plan and assist w/semi-annual New & Expectant Parents’ Dinner (rotating responsibility)
    • Serve as caregiver to expectant and new mother
    • Establish relationship, introduce family into preschool ministry
    • Shepherd family into other church environments (fellowship groups, Bible study)
    • Pray regularly for expecting family, mail a prayer card
    • Follow up regularly, bringing prayer needs to church
    • Own the church relationship with family, facilitating timely communication of:
      • Date of child’s birth
      • Hospital the mother/child is in
      • Proper spelling of child’s name
      • Special needs or other pastoral-care issues
      • Personally deliver/return: Expectant parent gifts, Cradle Care Gift Bucket and Yard Sign
      • Assist the family on Parent/Baby Dedication Sunday

Baby Showers: Serving as a caregiver has the potential to drain a family of financial and time resources when it comes to baby shower invitations. This is one of the biggest down-sides to recruiting people to serve on a CC ministry. You may need to set expectations in writing that caregivers may not be able to attend or provide gifts at baby showers for care recipients.

Special Needs: Train caregivers to provide ministry or make connections between participants and other church members/ministries who can meet specific needs. Care recipients will receive special support when they experience crises such as short-notice adoption, unwed or single mothers, miscarriage, still birth, high-risk pregnancy or bed-rest, pre-birth testing that shows potential problems, post-partum depression.

Prayer: The CC team understands the importance of their participation in individual and corporate prayers for their assigned families and for the group as a whole.

3. Bulletin Board

A bulletin board showing all pregnant women (beginning at either 12 or 14 weeks) through 3 months after birth would be displayed prominently in a high-traffic area, ideally near the preschool ministry. A CC team member with creative talents may design the layout of the board and recruit other CC team members to help assemble and maintain the board.

4. Gift Baskets

Gift(s) may be offered upon announcement of pregnancy and/or birth of baby. Suggestions include:

  • Christian parenting magazines or books
  • Bibs
  • Rubber ducks
  • Custom diaper-bag tags featuring the  Children’s Ministry logo
  • Small Bible with baby’s name printed on cover
  • Music CD (lullabies or Christian music)
  • Children’s ministry brochures

5. Yard Signs

Caregivers deliver a yard sign on a stick to go in the yard of the new family’s home. This is a great advertisement for the church. Parents love this, and it also serves as great advertising for the church!