How to Get Money for the Kids’ Ministry

A lot of kids’ pastors are naïve when it comes to money. They think ministry is all spiritual.

Your pastor is thinking about money every day.

Yes, your pastor is the primary preacher in your church, but in most instances he is also the primary fundraiser.

If it’s not your pastor, it’s your church board, but someone is carrying the financial responsibility. You want to have influence with these people.

You need to know how to talk to your leader about money in a way that communicates you get it.

I’m not going to lie to you. Most pastors are not motivated about kids’ ministry. Pastors just aren’t thinking about kids, so don’t try to get them to think about them. And quit begging for money.

Instead ask yourself: What motivates your pastor?

Pastors are motivated by growth. Experts tell us that children’s ministry is #3 on the list of things people think about when choosing a church.

NOW you have something to work with. Don’t view kids’ ministry as an expense. Kids’ ministry is an investment.

If a visitor comes with a six-month old child and the church nursery is full, that visitor is not coming back. It doesn’t matter how big the sanctuary is. This size of the church is limited by the size of the nursery.

If your classrooms fill up because they aren’t big enough, don’t get upset. Leverage it for growth.

At my most recent church, I had been talking to my pastor and church board for over a year because we were totally full in kids’ church. My words didn’t seem to get any traction, but I kept at it.

Then one Sunday in January, it happened.

We had to turn away some parents at the 11 AM service because there was no room. We were way past fire code.

For three weeks in a row, we had to turn kids away.

Some board members were coming to me saying, “You can’t turn kids away.” 

“What do you suggest I do?” was my response.

After that, the new kids’ building became part of the stewardship campaign, and I didn’t need to say a word.

On the other hand, it speaks volumes to a parent when a child says, “Mom, I like this church.”

At my first church, we had ages three to twelve in one room since we were just starting out. One Sunday I did the lesson on Sword of the Spirit where I chopped the apples. On this particular Sunday I had a new three-year old girl named Brooke. I was a little concerned what Brooke thought about the knife I used, but she seemed to do OK.

I was relieved to see the family return to church the following week. Her Dad mentioned to me that when they were getting ready for church that morning and Brooke spoke up, “Mom, Dad, I want to go to the apple slicing church.”

When you hear a testimony like this, make sure to sure your pastor and church board hear about it. An effective children’s ministry will bring your visitors back—this will motivate your pastor.  

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mharper@churchleaders.com'
Pastor, filmmaker and coach Mark Harper has 35 years of experience in the local church. He is the creator of the Super Church 2.0 Curriculum, which is used in over 5,000 churches worldwide. The focus of Mark’s ministry is helping leaders build strong churches and helping parents build strong families. Not only has Mark served in the local church as pastor, associate pastor, and family ministry pastor but he is also a certified coach with the John Maxwell Team.

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