Naming your ministry

Posted on 26. Oct, 2009 by in Fresh Ideas

helloI’ve been thinking a lot about ministry names lately.

Currently the name of Gateway’s Children’s Ministry is Kid’s Quest. Kid’s Quest was well branded here, but I feel a new name and new look is just around the corner for us, maybe launching a new look near the end of 2010.

Here’s what I’ve been thinking about. It seems like 5-10 years ago, it was a lot more common to find ministries with unique names. Now it seems it’s a lot more common for the Children’s Ministry to have some iteration of the church’s name. This makes total sense to me as you’re furthering the brand of the church through your ministry.

I’ve been a part of a few churches where we’ve renamed the ministry to sync up with the church’s name such as CT Kids (Cross Timbers), Anchor Kids (Anchor Church) and GBC Kids (Graceland Baptist Church). Even when I look around, I see other leading churches that do this as well: LifeKids (Life Church), KidSpring (NewSpring), Kids on the Move (Church on the Move) and so many others (Although there are still plenty of big and influential churches that don’t follow this thought).

So, what are you thoughts on this?

Meet Kenny

Kenny Conley has written 1846 posts on CMO.

Kenny Conley is the primary author of Childrens Ministry Online and the NextGen Pastor at Gateway Church in Austin, TX. In addition to creating the Illuminate Conference, a high quality kidmin conference designed specifically for volunteers, Kenny is a published author and speaker. For more biographical info, click here.


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51 Responses to “Naming your ministry”

  1. jonathan

    26. Oct, 2009

    I’ve stuck myself with an inherited name, because it was so identified by families within the church. I think if I changed it, people would still call it the old name.

    The only comment I have is to “respect the Z.”
    .-= jonathan´s last blog ..Twitter Weekly Updates for 2009-10-25 =-.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Spencer Click

    26. Oct, 2009

    If you can change the name of your Children’s ministry to be a reflection of your church’s name I think it’s great. You save yourself from having to put a tag line on everything. “The children’s ministry of…”

    It’s where we’re heading…right now the CM is called KidsWorld – in the spring we’ll be changing to Bethel Kids. We will become instantly identified with our church…

    Reply to this comment
  3. Rebekah

    26. Oct, 2009

    We have done the same thing at Oak Leaf Church. We were KidVenture for nearly 3 years. This August we launched a new curriculum and a new name, Oak Leaf Kids. What spurred the re-branding was when we chose to change the name of our student ministry from Fuel to Oak Leaf Students. Through many conversations about students and why so many teens are committed to their youth group and not the church, we have been emphasizing that they are a part of Oak Leaf Church. Since then, we have had students rise up as leaders and serve with Oak Leaf Kids with such passion.
    it’s just a name, but changing our focus with the name has made great strides for us as a church.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Sarah

    26. Oct, 2009

    We changed our name when our whole church re branded last year.

    I think it’s really good to have a name that ties in with the church name – partly for the un-churched community so that they can make connection.

    It’s also good for the kids and parents – a name that’s connected to the church shows that the kids ministry is connected. We’re building the house of God, not the house next door.

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  5. David Wakerley

    27. Oct, 2009

    So we went with the simple Church inspired – Hillsong Kids kinda naming idea.

    My thinking is that with five age groups (Cubbyhouse, Ark, Fun House, All Stars and Voltage) parents don’t really care or don’t need to care about more names within a ministry. If there was a way to get rid of age group names I would.

    Keep it strong and simple is my thoughts.

    .-= David Wakerley´s last blog ..Top Ten =-.

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  6. collin

    27. Oct, 2009

    I inherited ‘Kids on the Rock’ and my wife hated it. So finally we’re changing/rebranding to C4 Kids. Our church’s strategy is C4 (Connecting to God, Connecting to Others, Ministry, and the World) so we’re jumping on board with that. Plus, we can get creative with C4, huh? Can you say Explosive Children’s Ministry?!

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  7. Kendra Golden

    27. Oct, 2009

    I think Rebekah struck on something that is key. Renaming the same old thing is tough to create momentum around and can lead to confusion. Tying the change to a real difference (like curriculum or age groups or a remodel or church branding) is way better.

    We recently had to rename our 5th and 6th experience from FUSE (which I loved) to THE LOOP (which I think is silly) after only a year because another church wouldn’t grant us permission to use the name (Since we give away curriculum with the branding. Weird, huh?). People are struggling to get what happened, especially since the Fuse name was only a year old itself. It occurred with a real difference though, a change from a 4th-5th room to a 5th-6th room.

    To David, I think room names for age groups are important. If I’m in the kdg room and move to the first grade room, that’s pretty boring. But the names create mystique and anticipation. Especially ones like David’s which are each cooler and more exciting as you move up. If I were in any one of his rooms as a kid, I would be totally stoked to move up to the next.

    Reply to this comment
  8. Cheryl

    18. Nov, 2009

    I have just been thinking about this! So glad I ran across your article. Our church is Liberty Hill General Baptist Church. (quite a mouthful) And to date, our children’s ministry has simply been Liberty Hill General Baptist Church Children’s Ministry. (an even bigger mouthful!) Our Youth is not necessarily called “The Hub”, but that is their location or where they meet within our church. It is called this because we are a growing rural church in the middle of several area communties, which is frankly, pretty awesome and I love the name and the idea that we are “the hub”. I think the youth simply choose to be Liberty Hill Youth.

    We use several different “named” curriculum within our children’s ministry and I don’t want to name our ministry to follow this, I would like a unique name. I like the idea of syncing with the church name and have even thought of “Freedom Kids” to go along with “Liberty Hill”, but am not necessarily fond of using all that one would think should accompany a name like this, ie…stars, stripes, red, white and blue…. Anyone else have a cool thought?

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  9. Kenny

    18. Nov, 2009

    I love Liberty Hill Kids! It’s got a great fell. Freedom Kids is cool too, but then you’ve got that separate name from the rest of the church you have to wrestle with it being ok or not. Just my opinion, but I’d run from “Liberty Hill General Baptist Church Children’s Ministry” as fast as you can.That’s just painful.


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  10. Name (required)

    12. Jan, 2010

    We started a new church “New Beginnings Worship Center” do you have any comments to youth and children’s ministry names? Of course, ultimately it will be birthed through prayer.

    Reply to this comment
  11. KJ Coupland

    14. Apr, 2010

    I am in the middle of planning a total rebranding.
    My thoughts are along the lines of a University theme

    Baby U
    Toddler U
    Junior U
    Big Kid U

    this will keep it pretty easy for parents to keep track of where their child should be…. I hope

    what do you guys think?

    Reply to this comment
    • Mark

      02. Jul, 2014

      I would do something different than Big Kid U. Not sure a 4th or 5th grader would be care for that name.

      Reply to this comment
  12. lighting gal

    12. Aug, 2010

    How about trying an acranname

    Reply to this comment
  13. Beth

    04. Sep, 2010

    I’ve loved reading your comments. I would love any thoughts you would have for me. We are a new church start and Orchard Path is our name. I was thinking something like OPC Kidz (or s) but have also like suggestions I’ve seen other places like naming the kids ministry The GROVE. Any thoughts?

    Reply to this comment
    • Kenny

      04. Sep, 2010

      Honestly, I like Orchard Kids. OPC Kids is okay… kind of a mouthful. The grove is a cool name for a Children’s Ministry, and it’s cool when you see it in relation to the church name… but the only thing I don’t like is that it’s different enough from the church name that if you were communicating it separate from the church, you’d have to explain that it’s a part of OPC. Just my opinion though. Last comment. Stay away from the Z. This is the disease of Children’s Ministry. Again… just my opinion… but one of my quests in life is to influence Children’s Pastors to stop using a Z instead of an S. :)

      Reply to this comment
  14. Scott Huggins

    09. Sep, 2010

    Alright Peeps.

    I moved to Costa Rica 3 months ago and found a church to serve at as CM Leader. Let me hear your votes:

    Name Suggestions for Beach Community Church Children’s Ministry

    Son, Surf and Sand
    Coconut Hut
    Surf Club
    KWAM (kids with a mission)
    The Beach
    The Rock
    BCC Kids

    Thanks in advance. Peace in HIM!

    Reply to this comment
    • Kenny

      11. Sep, 2010

      Personally, I vote BeachKids or BCC Kids. I tend to go with simplicity, clarity and broad appeal. Both of these names can fit with any age group and kids of any age could identify with it. You could always name specific age areas that are age specific… But your overarching name needs to not single any age group out.

      Also, both of these names clarify that they belong to Beach Community Church. No ambiguity there.

      Last of all, it’s really simple. You can “fun it up” with a logo or brand… But it’s just too easy.

      Those are my thoughts though.
      Also… For the love of all that is holy.. Stay away from the “z!”

      Reply to this comment
  15. franklin santhosh

    26. Oct, 2010

    Till now we called our church children’s ministry as SUNDAYSCHOOL.Now we desired to replace this name based on our church theme(RAISING LEADERS FOR CHRIST)..

    Reply to this comment
  16. benjamin.A

    04. Jan, 2011

    Iam starting children ministry in Bangalore , India i wanted some funky and good name for my ministry please help me out in this

    Reply to this comment
  17. Tim Johnson

    05. Apr, 2011

    I just renamed our Children’s Ministry Crown of Life Kids which used to be Kid’s Korner. Now i am trying to come up with some age group names. birth-2 yrs, 3-5 yrs, and 6-12 yrs. Anyone got any ideas for me? Our church is Crown of Life Lutheran Church. Thanks!

    Reply to this comment
  18. Kaydee

    14. Apr, 2011

    I like names that have something to do with the church if you are a part of a church. However, I am starting up a ministry for 4th and 5th grade girls, unaffiliated. Some ideas I’ve either come up with or seen in my search for name ideas:
    Base 45
    The Summit
    SHINE (Seek Him IN Everything)
    ACE (Always in Christ’s Embrace)
    BLAST (Building Lives Around Scriptural Truth)
    ATTIC (Always Trusting Together In Christ)
    The Forge
    SWAT (Students With A Testimony)
    Tag (stolen from New Life Church’s old youth group name in Colorado Springs)
    I liked Collin’s “C4″ posted on this page
    And I liked Kendra’s old name “FUSE”

    I can’t believe how hard it is to name a group for 9-11 year old girls! Any other ideas or comments anyone??

    Reply to this comment
    • jc9415

      06. May, 2013

      We started a ministry for 3rd-6th grade girls. We called it Salvation Sisters. It was important to us that the girls would view each other as sisters and not only grow a bond with God but themselves as well. Hope this helps :)

      Reply to this comment
  19. Chris

    21. Apr, 2011

    This discussion has been very insightful. Any comments on using the “church branding” approach with a First Baptist Church? FirstKids sounds fine, but then there’s the “which First Baptist?” question (there are several small towns around and each has a First Baptist Church). If the prevailing thought is for our own kids to grasp identity with our ministry and church and not worry about others wondering which FBC we’re from, then FirstKids works fine. But if we’re promoting our church and children’s ministry through T-shirts, posters, postcards, etc., then what is a catchy way to fine-tune “FirstKids?”

    Reply to this comment
  20. Valerie Sowers

    26. May, 2011

    I am looking for a new name for our children’s church. We are moving into a bigger area of the church which we just added and all will be new. I am searching for a new name which would include our church name, Grace Fellowship Family Worship Center. Also, looking for a new theme for the room. We have been called Sonforce kids and had a space theme. Wanna change it up for the new space and make it new and exciting. Any ideas?
    Thank you.

    Reply to this comment
  21. Jen

    09. Jun, 2011

    Rebranding. Need a name that reflects a connection between church and home.
    Words reflecting on…connecting, sync, bridging, linking,…

    Reply to this comment
  22. Jackie

    02. Sep, 2011

    For me, it is very important to rename your children’s ministry a name that prophecies over them each time someone speaks it. It empowers them and the church community.

    Reply to this comment
  23. Becky

    04. Feb, 2012

    We are just starting a Childrens Ministry and looking for a name / brand logo for our group. Our church name is New Beginnings Worship Center. I want something unique. THanks for the help.

    Reply to this comment
  24. Sil

    17. Feb, 2012

    Ok here is my dilemma in the process of transitioning from one church to another, and looking for a name for my new Kids Church. The problem is I love the name of the kids church from my previous church which is EXtreme Kids….do you think it would be ok to use the same name? I would probably add the initials of my new church to the beginning?

    Reply to this comment
    • Kenny Conley

      24. Jun, 2012

      Personally, I say start fresh. Sometimes I get a little weirded out when I see someone go to a new church and completely transplant everything they did at their previous place at the new place. Sure, most things can be re-done, but this is an opportunity to be a little creative and tie into the DNA of your new church.

      Reply to this comment
  25. Kristen

    02. Mar, 2012

    Hey everyone! Such great thoughts. I am at the point with developing major program changes by Fall 2012 and truly desire to have a catchy name for the ministry. RIght now, we don’t have anything except our church name which is a mouthful…Glen Ellyn Bible Church Children’s Ministry. I could just called it GEBC Kids or something but that sounds so lame. Any ideas? Would you have a name that sync’s with the new curriculum we are going to do?

    Reply to this comment
  26. DNewman

    11. Jun, 2012

    We are exploring the possibility of renaming our kids ministry. Our church name is APEX and right now we just call our kids ApexKids… But we would like to have individual names for each age group? Any ideas? I’m thinking Apex means “Top” or “high peak so i was thinking of like climbing terms like base camp, summit things like that, but that’s as far as my knowledge goes for climbing. Any help would be appreciated.

    Reply to this comment
  27. Kenny Conley

    24. Jun, 2012

    I think this is a great idea DNewman. It might be a little weird if you’re in a state like, Florida. However, you could incorporate some great mountain climbing terms like base camp, Summit, Tree  Line and others. I’d connect with someone who is an avid climber/hiker and get all the verbage. What may help even more than just your room names is adopting terms that becomes a common language for your volunteer teams. Maybe things like “guides” or “expedition leaders” for your teachers/leaders, or even relate other training components to tools you would use while hiking. Maybe a harness, belay system, and other repelling/mountain climbing hardware. One of the biggest things about hiking is accountability. Never do it alone and always let someone know where you’re going to be. When it comes to ministry, safety is always found in numbers.

    I think you’re on to something good and it would be a fun environment for sure!

    Reply to this comment
  28. AMichael

    30. Oct, 2012

    Hello, I stumbled across your blog doing research.I am in my very first long term children’s ministry position ( I had a 4 month interim position before being hired on where I am currently) and I get to rebuild the ministry however I want. The Church is Kingsway Christian Church and I want to stick similar to the church name when renaming the kids. The mens group here at the church is KingsMen and the women’s group is KingsDaughter. I was thinking either Kingdom Kids or KingsKids. I also want to repaint the entire kids area and was thinking some sort of kingdom theme would be awesome. Any insight would be very helpful. Thanks!

    Reply to this comment
    • MRSidwell

      09. Jul, 2014

      My immediate reaction was “KingsKids”, before I got thru your post. The “click” of the K repeated is a well known marketing strategy publicists have used for years. It’s memorable and recognizable.

      Reply to this comment
  29. jc9415

    06. May, 2013

    I am starting a position at a new church and want to include a new name in my 3 year plan for the board. So far I have come up with

    -Route 66

    -CIA (Children In Action)

    -KMotion (Some acronym)

    -Choas (some acronym starting with Children )

    – K-Boom! (Some acronym)

    – illuminate Kidz Church

    Any thoughts…

    Reply to this comment
  30. julie cochran

    07. Aug, 2013

    we just finished a program with our kids (1st grade to 5th grade age) called “Agents in Action”… it was a secret agent theme…. the new program that we are starting doesn’t really have a “theme”… i’m trying to come up with something catchy- to call our Sunday night program for the kids… I need some advise :) please…

    Reply to this comment
  31. BC

    20. Aug, 2013

    Looking for names for our children’s ministry “Power Up” for the specific age groups Ages 3-5 and Grades 1-6 related to the Power theme – Ephesians 3: 16-19. Any ideas?

    Reply to this comment
    • tosha

      08. Jul, 2014

      When I think of power I think about flipping on a switch, pole lights, starting a car, turning on the a/c. Names could be flip your switch with a light switch as your design, power beam and design could be the pile light, crank it up with a design of a car engine, heat up out cool off with a design of a/c or a breeze/wind

      Reply to this comment
  32. Ann

    22. Aug, 2013

    I like the idea of having the children’s church name related to the name of the church. We are Wenatchee Valley Baptist Church, quite a mouthful. What is your thought on calling our children’s church Wenatchee Valley Kids?

    Reply to this comment
  33. Diane

    08. Nov, 2013

    Any ideas for renaming a first-sixth grade ministry in an old historical church in a downtown area? First year for us being in this historical building from 1867.

    Reply to this comment
  34. Angel

    15. Jan, 2014

    OK so I have read through most of the posts, and I truly appreciate all the help there is! I too am in need of naming help!
    1.) Family monthly ministry name
    2.) Childrens (Sunday School) ministry name
    3.) Youth Group name!
    My church name is Aldersgate so I would like to try to get something catchy that will stick and sound fun for them.
    Any ideas out there> PLEASE HELP!!!!!!

    Reply to this comment
  35. Tammy Palermo

    10. Sep, 2014

    I am also looking at branding our KidMin at Mentor United Methodist Church. The 5th & 6th Graders have a fellowship group called StuCo 56 (Student Community).
    I am changing up our Sunday morning to do a large group/small group format. Any thoughts are GREATLY appreciated!

    Reply to this comment
  36. Tammy Palermo

    10. Sep, 2014

    I should also mention that our tag line for the church is “Leading all unto a path of Christ-centered discipleship.” We also use Know, Grow, Show as ways to indicate how we are making disciples.
    We are on Route 20 in Ohio. I was thinking of the possibility of something to do with “east to west”…

    Reply to this comment
  37. Amy

    12. Sep, 2014

    I am a new CP and we have not kids ministry name —any suggestions for me would be appreciated . Church name is Bethesda Assembly of God- we have one room we refer to as Clubhouse the other SHed but I would like something that ties it all in together …

    Reply to this comment
  38. Natasha

    24. Nov, 2014

    Very insightful. Any comments on using the church branding approach with Mill Creek Church of God? At one time, the youth was known as “Aftershock” A generation to shake the nation but the name has died off throughout the years. Any insights would be very helpful.

    Reply to this comment
  39. Natasha

    26. Nov, 2014

    We are currently redeveloping our children’s ministry and would love some suggestions on names. At one point in time, they were called Aftershock, a generation to shake the nation. I would like to take the church branding approach. Thanks!

    Reply to this comment
  40. Natasha

    26. Nov, 2014

    We currently go by Mill Creek Church of God Children’s Ministry. Such a mouthful!

    Reply to this comment
  41. Persy

    26. Jan, 2015

    I just started out in the children’s ministry and I have to name the kids department I’m from south Africa and the church is called be blessed bible faith church it would be easy to just go with bbbfc kids but I wanna be different can any1 help

    Reply to this comment
  42. Jjknox

    25. Feb, 2015

    I was thinking about the name GOD’S ANGELS !

    Reply to this comment


  1. This Week in Children’s Ministry for 10/28/2009 - October 28, 2009

    […] Maybe it’s time to think about naming Your Children’s Ministry. […]

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