July 2021 Weaving Faith in a New Program Year

At my church we are busy with preparations for fall. I had honestly forgotten how many pieces there are to a “normal?” year! Below I’ve gathered together a robust collection of my past articles and some gems from colleagues and categorized them based on the three ministry priorities my team is working on right now:

  1. Squaring the corners (credit to Ministry Architects): an up to date database, annual calendar, recruiting list for volunteer leaders, and a curriculum template.
  2. Intentional re-gathering after 18 months apart: invitation, clear communication, and excellent hospitality are all vitally important right now.
  3. Infusing joy into children’s ministry and surrounding our entire community in prayer: Both are essential spiritual practices. 

Resources for Squaring the Corners:

My 2021-2022 Lesson Planning Calendar and Ministry Planning Guide (this one is on Etsy)

My Checklist  for new and transitioning staff 

Tip: Don’t forget to update background checks for ministry volunteer leaders according to your safe church policy! Our policy asks for updated checks every three years – so we have a lot to update.

Christine V. Hides

Resources for Intentional Re-gathering:

Reflecting on Phone books as a metaphor for Relevant Ministry.

Welcome U – what churches can learn from colleges about hospitality.

Budget friendly check in ideas .

When you enter this church you are… door decor that affirms children’s spiritual capacity.

For places where children will be in worship, you might want to set realistic Children in worship expectations.

What church culture shifts are emerging that need to be communicated? I wonder if the future church will have more casual dress. This past reflection, What to wear, has aged pretty well. 

What about a group art project for Rally or Homecoming Sunday? I’ve got ideas for stewardship, sample art projects, and fostering community with circle painting.

Tip: Keep in mind that he rising kindergarten kids have only had a few months of 3 year old in-person Sunday school – if any! Two years worth of kids have transitioned to youth ministry. What extra communications tools do parents need to re-engage with Children’s Ministry? Videos? Letters explaining your purpose and why? Phone conversations? Town hall style meetings?

Christine V. Hides

Infusing Joy and Surrounding the Community in Prayer

First, what is joy and is it the same as fun?Joy versus fun.

How might Discovery Day and Outdoor Faith Formation invite joy?

These printable Question Cards create faith+home connections.

This Back to School Prayer is for all children. 

An Outdoor Prayer Station can be a palace for your community to connect.

Last year we used ribbon streamers at our outdoor Back to School Blessing service.

Don’t Forget! Children and families may still be processing how the pandemic impacted them. Jennifer Grant has a new picture book that uses child friendly, simple yet elegant, language to name both the losses and the learnings of the pandemic. There are several pages in the back to write feelings and memories to share with future generations. You may pre-order through my affiliate link on Bookshop.

Christine V. Hides

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