It's been three weeks since the Orange Conference and there was so much to process after coming home. Since I was the only one from our children's ministry team that was able to attend, it was my job to bring all of what I learned home to share with everyone. Knowing that attending Orange is like drinking from a fire hose for days, I had to process before passing on anything. Sam Luce gave me some great advice the first year I attended the conference when I explained that I was a bit overwhelmed. He said to pick three things that I learned and work on those. I went to work on writing up everything on what I wanted to share and presented them to our director.
So here are my three things.
All three things are from from Gina McClain's workshop.
Gina had spoken about how essential it is to highlight the win by sharing stories. These stories will communicate what is important, that there are valuable things happening, and could potentially be an invitation to get involved.
Prior to Orange our team had briefly spoken about doing some videos to share with the church during service, but they were mostly going to be informational. What I suggested is that we create videos that would tell the stories of why we serve and all that God is doing in the lives of our kids. Informational videos while necessary and definitely useful, often only engage those who actually have children in our ministry. So in addition to the series promotional videos, we are also sharing the stories that we hope will reach everyone.
Gina expressed the responsibility we have to empower our small group leaders with clear goals and values. That everyone should know what to do and how to do it, what is a priority, and what is expected of them.
The most common ways of communicating these goals and values are a handbook and verbally giving these directions. We had been doing well verbally, but needed to update our handbook for our adult volunteers and create one for our junior volunteers. We took this a step further and wanted to create one not only for small group leaders, but for all leaders in our ministry. We have just finished our junior volunteer handbook and are currently working on one for the adults.
Gina discussed helping small group leaders to think small and that how they are equipped matters. She spoke of empowering small group leaders by giving them a roster of the kids in their group and explaining that these are the ones to know, love on, and pray for each week.
We want our small group leaders to take ownership of their groups and this is a fantastic way to do that. We have completed the roster and are working on additional information to provide leaders including addresses and birthdays of each child. Not only will this provide a list of children to pray for each week, but will also allow them to connect and build relationships outside of Sundays.
These are just a few things I brought home to share with our team that we are currently working on applying to our ministry.
What were your takeaways from Orange?
How are you implementing them?
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