I’d like to say that they never worked, but as a kid I was a big fan of Psalty the Singing Songbook and Charity the Church Mouse. I had the records and cassette tapes with the kiddie-dopey illustrations… and I think I loved it. Children’s Pastors take notice… it’s not the 80’s anymore!

Always having been a young Children’s Pastor, I’ve tired my best to create an elementary ministry that related to the kids we were trying to reach. What seemed to work for me as a 5th grader did not work for me. I remember being so frustrated with music options 8-10 years ago. I couldn’t find worship songs that didn’t sound like the music was recorded with toy instruments. We wore out Big House as it was the only song that I wasn’t embarrassed to do with my 4th and 5th graders.

Over the years, I always tried to push the envelope on what music we’d play as kids were hanging out. In the early years of ministry, DC Talk (those kids loved Jesus Freak) and Five Iron Frenzy were winners. The WOW music videos were usually pretty good, but even in recent years I felt the need to even grab some of the edgier that really grabbed those older boys. The boy band and girl groups had nothing on the power chords of a spiky haired rock band. On occasion I’d have a parent complain that the music was a little mature. At least I knew I was pushing the envelope.

Well, I think all of this is true of the images we use as well. Whether it be a logo, a flyer or our web site. Fact is, dopey graphics don’t cut it anymore. A few years ago I created a new logo for my summer camp (called Camp Extreme). It was pretty fun. Then last summer I told the graphic artist that I wanted him to make it edgy. I wanted it ripped and scraped and beat up. The result was the coolest camp graphic we’ve ever had… and the kids loved it. No more dopey camp shirts.

I was pleased to see the camp logo that my friend Sam Luce is using for his summer camp. It’s modern, fun and reflects what is popular right now… holding to the retro look. I love it. That set me out to find what other people were using as their camp graphics. I was impressed by so many.

However, there were a few that seem to be stuck in the 80’s. For the love of reaching kids, stop it. Update yourself. Get a new image. It’s not as hard as you would think. Even if you have no budget for this kind of stuff, I bet there’s a 15 year old in your church that could create something really cool. See what you can do!

The Good Ones:





The Bad Ones:




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