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Build Community and Reach Out Through Your Kids!

Crisp colorful leaves are starting to fall and kids are now getting back into the groove of school. With fall coming full-speed-ahead, it's the perfect time to plan a fun outreach to children that spreads the light of Jesus to their whole family and gets them plugged into your church for good!

We want to equip and motivate children to reach out to others. When kids share their Christian faith with others, they're not only strengthening their own faith, but they're spreading the Good News about Jesus to those who haven't heard!

The most effective way to reach unchurched kids is by encouraging your church kids to invite their unchurched friends to your children's ministry programs. But keep in mind that unchurched kids may not be attracted to the idea of "Christian growth," so be sure to emphasize the fun of your programs-the games, crafts, snacks, and friendships!

Discovering a Friendship With God
"Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord" (2 Peter 1:2).

Can you remember a time when you met a new friend in your neighborhood or community? People are drawn to friendships with one another. Most people can still remember (or still keep in touch with) friends from grade school. We don't easily forget friendships. When you introduce Jesus to a child, you're sharing with them the best friend they'll ever have. Reaching out to the community and helping people grow in their relationship with Jesus is what outreach is all about! When kids discover that Jesus is their "forever friend," they'll experience the eternal love of a father who never leaves them or rejects them.

Building Community
"God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them" (Hebrews 6:10).

Effective outreach starts with building community in your church. Having a sense of community and meaningful relationships with other people is an important way to feel connected with one another and the church.

It's important to build community in the church through your children's ministry programs. Getting everyone involved makes each person know that he or she plays an important role in kids' lives. When you build community in your church you're building relationships, and relationships with one another help us to grow stronger in our faith.

Parents are the people who will have the greatest spiritual impact in their children's lives -- this means involving families in your children's ministry programs is important! We encourage you to involve kids' families in your programs whenever possible.

There are a variety of ways to involve parents and families in your ministry:

  • Have a "celebration station" at your church where parents and adults can stop by and see what's on the calendar for the month. Encourage parents and adults to sign up to
    • bring snacks for the kids,
    • be a guest speaker during the children's program, or
    • lead an activity or lesson one week.
  • Have a celebration time each week and invite parents and family members to applaud and affirm kids' actions. It's also a great way to meet parents each week! When they attend, take some time to greet each of them.
  • Make an announcement in your church about the things you're doing in your children's ministry area. Invite (and encourage) the adults in your church to join in the fun activities and important events.

Your teens can also help with a number of roles. They can

  • greet kids as they arrive,
  • take photos,
  • help with snacks and crafts, or
  • help with preschoolers.

Teens make great role models for younger kids, and it's a great self-esteem builder when you encourage them to participate in significant roles!

A New Kind of Outreach
Group's Heroes Unmasked and Wild West Fest, new Halloween alternative events, were built with one thing in mind: intentional outreach. You can use the program any time you're trying to reach your community to express God's love -- all the games, activities, and publicity items have timeless themes -- but each is perfect for Halloween.

Heroes Unmasked and Wild West Fest are designed as a family outreach events that emphasize fun, discovering Jesus, and building community! The program will draw children and their families to your church and give them a great experience. But beyond that it will provide a great way for you to make personal contact with children and parents and give you a logical reason to stay in touch with them. It's an unbeatable outreach event for the community, kids, and their families.

We want to help kids know and understand God's love in child-friendly ways. Both Heroes Unmasked and Wild West Fest plant Bible truths in kids' hearts and minds in ways that stick!

Check out the thrilling adventure awaiting families at www.group.com/heroes and Group's Wild West Fall Fest. Each is a great way to encourage kids to reach out to others and grow your children's ministry program, all at the same time!

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