Thursday, June 12, 2014

"A Family-Friendly Ministry"

As The Source Church gets ready for our move to Rockin' R Ranch (find out more in the blog below), I have been charged with the task to draw up the ideas for "improvements" that we need to make in order to make it "family friendly."  And of course as I consider it, I ask myself, "Self, what does a family friendly ministry look like?”

SAFE for the Entire Family:
If you are like many moms, the first thing you think of is physical saftey.  Is this location safe for kids?  Our leadership team has discussed at great length what this means.  
- Do Exits keep wandering kids from wandering out?
- Are there any places a toddler can easily hurt themselves?
-Does the classroom set-up provide security and accountability?
- Are children encouraged to stay in the main area when with their parents?

ENGAGING for the Entire family:
A white-walled room is "safe" for the family, but we also want a place that is engaging!  We desiring to build a new playground that is fun for the kids, and make them want to be there.  We are building children's classrooms that are attractive and can help in focusing children's hearts and minds on the truth of the gospel.  
We believe the Western theme location can instantly be engaging for the rest of the family as well.  We want to update the lighting and A/V of the main room to create a truly worshipful atmosphere for all ages.  

WORSHIPFUL for the Entire family:
Many ministries separate families to worship.  This is understandable when it comes to aspects of teaching, but do we go as far as we can to help the family worship and fellowship together?  Our church has made the decision very consciously to keep the whole family together for most of our worship morning.  The children then head to classrooms during the message to have the little hearts focused on big (but wonderfully simple) ideas about God.  

Our fundraising will hopefully give us what we need to provide classrooms at the back of the main room, where the kids will not be far from the rest of the family, but get focused teaching.  One of those rooms will also be a nursery room, where parents can sit with their babies or little ones, but still hear and be involved in the worship and message time.

This topic is not done.  I have purposefully ended there to get your thoughts.  What other things are necessary for a Family Friendly Ministry?  Please let us know in the "Comments" field below!

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