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Ministry of the Month

Various ministries within the church are spotlighted, identifying solutions for growing and strengthening these specialized groups.

Planning an Indoor Playground

  When you decide to create an indoor playground, you may be thrilled and ready to jump right into the process. It’s also perfectly normal to have a lot of questions. Questions are actually a great sign. They show you’re taking this investment seriously and planning ahead to create the best possible play space for

Growing Membership by Attracting Young Families

  By Eric Torrey Church attendance numbers in America are declining. According to Pew Research and Gallop Polls, it has been declining for several decades. This is particularly true for mid-size churches. A recent study noted that from the period 1994-2004, while the smallest churches (attendance 1-49) and the largest (2,000 plus attendees) experienced membership

The Secret to Hiring & Retaining a Great Daycare Staff

By Wendy Young One of the greatest attractions your church daycare has to offer is your teachers! So where can you dig up these hidden gems, and how can you hang onto your best childcare staff once you’ve brought them in and invested in their training? You spend time training new childcare staff – lots

9 Ways to Grow Your Preschool Ministry

By Jenny Funderburke Very few churches reach younger families without a strong preschool ministry. Here are nine practical ways to expand the number of preschool children coming to your church. 1. Do it well. It will be virtually impossible to grow your preschool ministry if you are doing it halfway. Evaluate, identify challenges, and then

Why Churches Should Start Seeing AVL as a Service

If you’re used to being the place your community comes for existential help, you might not always recognize it when you need it yourself. Point blank, help is the hardest thing to ask for when you’re “supposed” to have it all together. As a church production team, you’re juggling events throughout the week, services on

9 Questions to Ask Before Booking a Retreat Venue

By Kayla Crawford There are so many components that go into planning an event. One of the most important is where to host it. There are a multitude of venues all over the country that are perfect for overnight retreats. However, choosing one is not easy. Nothing sours an event quicker than hearing “I wanna

5 Ways a Youth Mission Trip Can Change Your Ministry

We love youth ministry…it’s why we lead mission trips for teens each summer.  We know youth workers face so many obstacles when it comes to discipling their students well, from budgets, to lack of volunteers, to the high expectations placed on students to perform. While we can’t solve all these problems, we know that spending

7 Simple Summer Ideas for Student Ministry

By Tim Price In many ways, summers can still be carefree for students. Of course, there is some travel and sports, but not every student is gone every day. Summer months provide a great opportunity to build relationships, form community, be out a bit later, enjoy some warmer weather activities and help keep students connected.

15 Ways Thriving Churches Communicate

We know that church communication can feel daunting at times. Helping to tackle that beast of a topic is what inspires us every day. Out of the hope to free up time and streamline processes for church leaders, we created the Top 15 Ways Thriving Churches Communicate with their people. You’ll find that these are

Creative Hardwood Flooring Considerations for Your Sports & Recreation Space

When a church invests in a new sports floor, two things are expected: the floor should offer quality improvements and enhance or complement the look and feel of the facility. The art of balancing an aesthetically pleasing facility while achieving maximum performance is easy when you specify a sports floor from a manufacturer that takes

6 Tips for Taking Professional Church Directory Photos

By Kristen Greene One downside of creating your own church directory or using a do-it-yourself church directory software program is having to take your own photos of church members. We don’t want to end up with a directory filled with “mug shots” that simply don’t paint your members in the best light. After all, who

What to Look for in a Bus Dealership

By Alison Wahl There are quite a few bus dealerships around the country, each seemingly with specific advantages. Unfortunately, most dealerships are several hundreds of miles apart and can be difficult to compare. How can you know which one is the best fit for your church? Exploring the following points can help you and your

Adding Indoor Recreation to Your Children's Ministry

By Grant Davies Increasingly, vibrant children’s ministries have shown to play a significant role in the maintenance and growth of worshipers within a church congregation. Both feedback and experience indicate the importance of creating a space within a church for children to learn, move and grow which in turn creates a sense of excitement and

The Ideal Choice for Recreational Flooring

Maple flooring has been the ideal choice for sports and athletic facilities for more than a century due to its strength, durability and beauty. It is also an excellent choice for multipurpose facilities that host more than sporting events. Maple’s versatility and aesthetic qualities make it a wise choice for elementary schools, middle and high

8 Tips to Secure Your Church Daycare

By Jason Maddox There are many cost-effective ways to secure your church daycare or preschool facility. In this article, we share eight best practices for church daycare security using a combination of policies, procedures and technology to protect the children and employees in your care. 1. Develop Policies & Procedures Manual If you don’t already

6 Tips to Get Your Church Bus Road-Trip Ready

Fluids, tires, A/C, oh my! When it comes to getting your church bus road-trip ready, these are just a few items among a large list of things you’ll want to make sure are in good working condition before you and your church family hit the road. Check out our six tips for getting your church

4 Simple Steps to Engage Children in Worship

By Kristen Greene “How do we engage children in church?” This age-old question remains at the forefront for almost every children’s ministry leader, parent and pastor. And if you’ve ever sat up late at night, cutting out the gazillionth piece for some Pinterest craft that seemed like the perfect idea for kids, you may have

Network Connections and Bandwidth Requirements

By Bill Buchanan Determining your bandwidth requirements or options can be a challenging task, especially for churches with limited or volunteer IT staff. As a senior or campus pastor of a church, remember that your IT staff is primarily dealing with items such as: the internal network (making all of your computers, printers, and other

Running an Annual Planning Retreat for Your Church

Most churches have meetings and retreats. And if the people attending those meetings and retreats were honest, they would say they were not as effective as they should be. In fact, you might even hear the phrase “waste of time” tossed around. No matter how well your church is organized, getting the right people together

More Than a Mission Trip

By Katie Jones A group of travelers, tan and tired, pile out of the church van. They had an amazing time. They never imagined that such poverty could exist. They have never felt so close to Jesus. Then, all too quickly, the feelings fade, old rhythms return, and life settles back to normal. It’s a

Church Summer Reading Programs for Children

By Kristin Charles Libraries all over the nation conduct summer reading programs, so why shouldn’t we? There is a plethora of quality literature out there and children looking for something to do. All they need is a little encouragement! Goals Summer reading allows children to maintain skills and develop a lifelong love for books. Reading

Church Phone Apps: Improving Your Ministry via Better Relationships

By Jason Alexis We just can’t say it enough…having a comprehensive, relationship-building, digital strategy hugely increases your ministry’s ability to effectively communicate Christ’s message. A large part of that strategy is smartphone apps. You may be wondering what all the fuss is about. You may point out that technology has long been a part of

Adult Recreation: Indoor Sports Flooring Options

There are numerous options for indoor sports flooring, with the most popular being modular athletic flooring, wood, and rolled sheet goods. While wood flooring is noted as top of the line, it does come with hefty installation, maintenance, and temperature controlled facilities, not to mention the need to strip and restore annually. Modular flooring is

Making a Church Directory

By Aaron Marsh Print, Digital, or Both? Online directories as well as printed directories are excellent options that help church members to connect. With either online or print directories, you can opt for photo directories (usually a massive effort of coordinating members’ schedules with the photographer). The advantage of a photo directory is that it

How to Effectively Include Children's Indoor Play Spaces in Your Church Design

The church building is designed to minister to people of all ages, and one of the most important age groups to consider while planning is the children. The Barna Group indicates that “nearly half of all Americans who accept Jesus Christ as their Savior do so before reaching the age of 13, and that two

Benefits of an Indoor Play Structure

By Grant Davies The addition of a soft, self-contained indoor play structure offers many benefits to a religious facility, such as increased membership, greater enjoyment of experience and improved play and activity value. In an increasingly competitive world where every organization is vying for an advantage, adding a play structure play structure to a church

Five Things Parents Look for in a Daycare

Parents realize the importance of selecting the right care facility for their children since their choice of childcare center will have a major impact on their children’s lives. They want a place where their children will be comfortable and have fun, but that will also benefit and assist with their child’s development. Here are five

10 Ways to Bond with Preschoolers in Your Ministry

By Wayne Stocks I love preschoolers. They’re just a whole lot of fun, and they provide a mostly blank canvas. I love their energy. I love their excitement. I love their thirst and hunger for knowledge. I love their innocent view of the world. Spend the morning with a room full of preschoolers, and you

When Audio Disasters Happen: Four Steps to Follow

By Chris Huff Disaster strikes and it’s usually during the service. In the early days, I panicked. Now, I use a four-step plan that serves me well. As a quick note, if you’ve never experienced a production problem, your time is coming! 1. Relax Mental clarity is the No. 1 weapon in problem-solving during tense

Picking a Theme for Your Church Retreat

Having a central, driving theme is essential for a successful large event. It ties all the pieces of the retreat together, creates atmosphere, and makes it memorable for guests. Whether you’ve planned one-hundred events, ten, or only two, it’s always beneficial to evaluate your planning process. As you assess your method for theme selection and

Be Purposeful in Your Youth Mission Trip

By Doug Franklin We dream of trips that are intentional and lead to lasting change in the lives of our students. However, to make a trip purposeful, we have to hammer out more than the logistics. We have to design a trip experience that will challenge and stretch our students to grow as both disciples

Serving Others: Summer Program Ideas for Kids

By Emily Mullens Planning a Serving Others Summer (SOS) can be a fun way to connect to the community, serve others, and bring the church family together. These are very simple ideas you can carry out quickly. Print water bottle labels with a Bible verse and your church information and pass out at a local

Maximize Your Communication Strategy in 2017

What were your New Year’s resolutions? Eat healthier? Work out more? Maybe you want to develop a rock-solid communication strategy for your church. If that is the case, we can help! When thinking through your communication strategy, it is important to identify the audience and purpose for each of your channels. Having too much overlap

How to Organize an Adult Sports League

By Brian Sigafoos Learn how organizing recreational sports can be done right. The good news is you don’t have to spend a fortune to start a sports league. The bad news is if it’s your first time organizing a league, there are costs you may overlook. Facility costs will likely make up about half of your

Protecting Your Bus Ministry

  This article originally appeared in the November 2008 issue. By Larry Hipps Larry Hipps heads the Bring Them In Ministries, www.bringthemin.com. He is the president of the International Bus Ministry Association and the author of several books. In my line of work, I am often asked about permission slips and medical release forms when
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