What a silly question. Of course it does. I don’t have to convince you, do I? The problem is convincing others, right? Maybe you have found yourself in a situation like this:
- You discovered that the monthly dry cleaning bill for the choir robes is larger than your monthly budget
- You’ve been patiently waiting to come on staff full time, shortly after they hire the maintenance director, women’s director and administrative assistant to the missions pastor
- You got in trouble because the associate pastor’s wife found ground-in goldfish crumbs in the nice carpet where they kids aren’t allowed to meet
It’s so easy to become cynical, resentful and bitter when the ministry area you oversee isn’t valued as much as you believe it should be valued. This is what makes you a fantastic leader over this area, but it’s critical that you don’t “go there” emotionally. It’s frustrating, but it’s an unhealthy path that will damage you in more ways than one.
However, you serve in a very strategic place. You oversee the children’s ministry which IS a place of influence whether you realize it or not. The average church sees 20-30% of church attendance in kids birth through 5th grade. Another 5-10% of your church attendance serves in your ministry (depending on your volunteer ratios). Another 20-30% of your church are parents of the kids in your ministry area. Add that all together and we’re talking 45-70% of your church is directly affected my a ministry that you lead. As a children’s pastor/director, you must lead because of the influence you have.
I’m not talking about leading your people. You already do that. I’m talking about leading up and leading across. Your peers and superiors don’t always understand the influence of the role you have. They don’t understand the strategic nature of the position and it’s important that you build bridges and relationships so that you can lead your ministry with the influence and resources that you need.
One thing that I have found helpful is to gather resources that support the cause of Children’s Ministry. It’s not that your peers and supervisors don’t believe you, its just that they aren’t convinced that what you want is more important than what they want. You have to build your case and help them see reason. At the end of the day, everyone wants a healthy and growing church. When this happens, everyone wins. Here are a couple resources that I’ve found to validate the importance of kidmin in the local church.
This book by George Barna was a game-changer when it came out a little over 10 years ago. George Barna has always been a respected voice in church studies and trends. He builds an amazing case for churches who decide to value Children’s Ministry.
My friends at Worlds of Wow have been very helpful as I’ve been trying to lead changes in our church environments. We’ve all wanted to make improvements to our spaces and had requests turned down because of budget constraints. The research WOW has done with client churches is pretty compelling. Churches who prioritize the environment for kids/families grow.
This study is hot off the press. This was probably the most comprehensive salary study for large churches done to date. The findings are interesting, but not really that relevant to kidmin. However, there was one paragraph in this study that revealed some very interesting findings about children’s ministry in growing churches. Here’s what was written:
“The most strategic churches we work with are realizing that a premier children’s pastor/leader can become one of, if not the largest growth engines for the church. And such churches are paying accordingly. We are seeing an increasing trend of churches who pay the top person over children’s ministry more and more. In some cases, the children’s pastor is one of the top paid people on staff, higher than the student pastor, worship pastor or small groups pastor.”
Yes. Kidmin does matter and not just because you think it does. The research agrees with your feelings. Take your leadership to the next level. Build bridges and begin to help your peers and supervisors understand why Kidmin should be valued.
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