Mission Statements for Children’s Ministries

Mission Statements for Children’s Ministries

I’ve surveyed children’s ministry missions statements in preparation for courses I’ve created (the majority of congregations I surveyed didn’t have one).

I have been intrigued by the use of “mission statements” by children’s ministry programs in congregations.

I’ve got mixed…

Basic Rules for Planning Congregational Education Programs

Here are a few basic rules I always share with folks looking to get a handle on how to plan their church education program:


The persons who show up at an event are the ones who need to be…

A Look at John Wesley

In the history of modern education, John Wesley (1703-1791) holds a special place in the history and development of the religious education of children.


John Wesley, a product of a long line of ministers (he was the fifteenth of nineteen…

Where does growth begin?

In Toward a Theory of Instruction, educational theorist Jerome Bruner insists that a theory of development must be linked both to a theory of knowledge and to a theory of instruction, “or be doomed to triviality.” (Bruner p. 21)


Is my Sunday school class too big?

Every once in a while I get a chance to visit congregations with large Sunday School or Sunday morning Bible classes (though these are far and few between since covid).


I’ve seen some classes have between 50 and 100…

An aid to coping with anxiety

Reflecting on their challenge with generalized chronic anxiety, one person found they fell into five fairly distinct classifications:


Worries about disasters which, as later events proved, never happened (about 40% of their anxieties). Worries about decisions they had made…

Clergy Self Care

The calling to ministry involves service to others, self-denial, and often, self-sacrifice.

For many clergy, investing in self-care, however, can be a challenge.

Whatever its source, feelings of obligation, guilt, or shame; or a lacking sense of boundaries, clergy are…

Emotional Integration in Organizations

At the conclusion of a recent presentation on leadership in organizations someone asked, “How would you define emotional integration in an organization?”

While I did not use that phrase in my presentation, it was a good question.



Leadership 101

I enjoy those leadership books that revisit the basics.

While some books on leadership are better than others, I always find it helpful to be reminded of the fundamentals.

Whenever I’ve managed to get myself in trouble it’s because I’ve…

Why someone might not attend church

I met up with some old friends who’d brought along some of their friends I appreciated meeting.

It didn’t take long to get to that awkward point in the conversation that follows the “What do you do for a living?”

Intelligent People

I met a rare kind of person last week.

He was what I’ll describe as a genuinely intelligent person.

There are plenty of smart or knowledgeable people around, and given that I spend a lot of time around “academic types”…

Are you speaking the truth in love?

I’m revisiting some of the writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Few have written better on the matter of community.

I came across his thoughts on speaking the truth in love in community that I find timely.

I’ll confess I remain perpetually…

How to be a Popular Leader

Every once in a while I need to challenge someone by asking, “Do you want to be liked or do you want to be effective?”

In one sense it’s a false choice, but in another, leaders often will have to…

Learning and Experience

A couple of educators I know are high on what they call “experiential learning.”

They try to be “creative” in the use of “interactive” learning methods in their teaching: skits, simulations, role-play, art activity, dramatizations, etc.

Given the dearth of…

7 Things to know about leadership

The concept of leadership has seen its own evolution.

What constitutes a leader and leadership in fields of study and in various contexts have changed over the decades.

Over the years some concepts have proven more helpful, and more…