EDITOR’S NOTE: Dale Hudson has been serving in children’s ministry for over 30 years. He is an author, speaker and ministry leader. He is the founder and director of Building Children’s Ministry. Here’s his letter:
The church is made up of many different ministries. All of them are vitally important. I want to share with you why I believe Children’s Ministry is one of the most vital.
• Children’s Ministry was a priority for Jesus. The disciples didn’t think it should be, but Jesus did. He made time to minister to children.
• Children are the greatest mission field. Stats show that 85 percent of people who come to Christ do so before the age of 18. We must invest our time and resources where we will see the biggest harvest.
• Children’s ministry can be a major growth engine for your church. When you reach children, you reach parents. We can have the greatest worship and messages, but if the children are not connecting, mom and dad won’t stick around for long. There’s a reason people stand in line for hours waiting for their kids to see Santa.
• One of the best investments you can make for your church is a great children’s facility. It will pay for itself many times over by the families it brings.
• Children’s Ministry is not childcare. It is ministry at the most critical time in a person’s life. The early years are the most formative.
• Staff your Children’s Ministry well. There is no “slow” time for Children’s Ministry. Summer is our busiest time and we go from that right into the fall. A good ratio is one full-time person for every 100-125 kids. Your Children’s Ministry staff is one of your most valuable partners in ministry. Take good care of them.
• If your Children’s Ministry space is at capacity, your church will stop growing. It doesn’t matter how much space you have in the auditorium. A full Children’s Ministry space is a lid for the entire church.
• If you want to reach families, reach kids. Remember, students can drive themselves to church. Children are brought by their parents.
• Children are not the church of tomorrow, they are the church of today. A healthy family is made up of grandparents, parents and children. Involve them in the life of the entire church. Give them opportunities to lead worship, greet, pray, read Scripture, serve and more.
• Make the Children’s Ministry budget one of your largest budget items. God will pour out His financial blessings on a church that invests in reaching and discipling children.
Thank you for taking time to listen. We’re your biggest fan. We’re here to serve you. Our heart is to stand by your side and help you reach families for Christ.
This article originally appeared here.