Children’s Ministry of South Florida Justin Young 3 Jul 2013 Did you know that 80 percent of the children in America do not attend church on a regular basis? While many churches have amazing and dynamic children’s ministries, the sad fact is that of the over 40 million children between the age of 4 and 14 living in the United States of America, 80 percent do not attend church regularly. So, while your church may be doing a phenomenal job of reaching kids inside the church body, there is a great need to go out and meet unchurched kids in their own neighborhoods and communities. Research conducted by the Barna Group shows that 85 percent of Christians begin their relationship with Christ before age 14, and that the percentage drops drastically from age 14 onward. Children usually do not have any preconceived notions or prejudices about church or God and, as such, are open to respond to the love of Jesus in a powerful way. Fifty years of ministry Here in South Florida, local ministry Children’s Ministry of South Florida has been proclaiming the Gospel message specifically to children for over 50 years. Children’s Ministry of South Florida was founded in 1963 by Webb and Cassie Chenault out of a simple desire to impact unchurched children for Jesus. As a result of the Chenault’s decades of faithful service in reaching children with the Gospel, the lives of thousands of South Florida children have been impacted for Christ’s kingdom. Upon the Chenault’s 2012 retirement, Ron and Sandy Milner took the reins of the ministry. The Milners have served and pastored in the South Florida area for many years. As parents and grandparents themselves, they love and value children, and they are excited to bring fresh vision and passion to the long-established ministry. A focused mission Children were a priority with Jesus, which holds true with Children’s Ministry. The ultimate goal of all of the ministry’s efforts is to provide unchurched local children with a clear, age appropriate presentation of the gospel through songs, games, crafts, skits and illustrations. But the work does not stop at the point of conversion. Children’s Ministry then seeks to equip students with the tools for spiritual growth. The ministry makes every effort possible to reach the entire family – parents, siblings and even extended family members – with the gospel message. Children’s Ministry of South Florida outreach efforts typically focus on their ministry volunteers’ neighborhoods. Milner shares, “In Acts 1:8, Jesus instructs the church to share the gospel in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and to the end of the earth. Notice where they were instructed to begin, in Jerusalem; in their local communities and neighborhoods. Jerusalem is a reference to where we live – our home, our community, our local neighborhood. Our first mission priority should be our home – where we live. In today’s society, parents are not going to entrust their children to strangers, but they will entrust them to a person from the neighborhood – who they already know and trust.” Get involved Children’s Ministry of South Florida offers a variety of Bible clubs and evangelistic ministries to reach unchurched children in their local neighborhoods. This includes weekly Bible clubs that meet in neighborhood homes, churches, clubs or parks once a week; summer Bible clubs; vacation Bible school; special outreach events and teacher training classes. Whenever possible, these efforts are accomplished in partnership with a local church. Their goal is always to get the children plugged into a local church for their long-term growth and spiritual development. If you or your church have a heart to reach children in the nearby community but do not have the available resources or a clear plan to do so, a partnership with Children’s Ministry of South Florida is the perfect way to go. Whether through volunteering to host a Bible club in your home, attending a Children’s Ministry training session or helping out at a special event, there is no shortage of ways to get involved. Additionally, Children’s Ministry can benefit from prayer and financial support. Pray about your involvement, and remember the words of Jesus, “In the same way, your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should perish” (Matthew 18:14). For more information on the Children’s Ministry of South Florida, visit childrensministryofsouthflorida.org or call 954-826-1423. Share this articleTweet Leave a Reply Click here to cancel reply. You must be logged in to post a comment.