Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Questions for Dean

I was contacted recently by a Children's Ministry volunteer in British Columbia, Canada about "interviewing" me for a Seminary project he his completing.  As I was typing the questions, I thought these would make some good blog posts to give you a climpse of what Colonial Woods is all about as well as the future vision of children's & family ministry hear.  Here are the first 3 questions and answers.  Enjoy!

1.  How long have you been with this church and what is the name of your position?
(found out that some people call themselves different than what is posted on the website)
I have been at Colonial Woods since January, 2007 after relocating from Longmont, Colorado.  My official title is Director of Children's Ministry.  I am working on my licensing currently and will hopefully have that by the end of this year.

2. How would you describe the state of Children’s and Family Ministry (CFM) when you first started at this church, what changes have been made so far, and where do you hope to see it?
I inherited a ministry that had been run primarily by "doers" (the person I replaced retired after about 15 years as the D of CM) as compared to leaders.  There was and still are elements that the D of CM is responsible to make sure everything happens (finding subs was a big issue).  I have been able to slowly turn this tide into showing people that their service to the kids is not "for me" but for the Kingdom out of their commitment to God. 
Also, when I came things were very traditional in just about every ministry setting - both services on Sunday, Sunday night, & Wednesday night.  Every room had one teacher and one helper (if they were lucky) teaching a traditional minded curriculum.  What I was able to do was slowly turn this tide and broaden into using some large group/small group stuff (Elevate during 2nd Service Elementary and 2:52 Basics on Wednesday night) as well as started an Elementary large group program on Saturday nights (which was a new service time added after I came).
Where I hope to go is to set up a volunteer coordinator or director in various spots to help oversee the growing numbers of kids and volunteers.  I would like to make a "business model" that has coordinators in charge of Sunday Pre-school, Sunday Elementary (1 for each of the 2 services), Sunday PM Pioneer Club (which I already have), a room coordinator for each room (who may also serve double duty as the teacher of one of the services), Wed PM Coordinator, etc.
Eventually I hope to move into a role of Family Pastor overseeing CM and youth ministry along with providing opportuniteis for parents to grow in passing their faith to their children at home.

3. You had mentioned a growing family ministry program.  Can you describe what that is and how it came to be?
Family Journey in Faith is our name for this FM that aims at partnering the church and parents together to bring about the spiritual formation of children.  We conduct 9 Take-It Home events throughout the year (Sept - June) where we bring children of a specific age/grade together with their parents and teach on a given topic.  I can send you a grid of what topics we cover for which grades if you would like.  It is  a program that initially started before I came, but that I took over leadership once I came on board (mainly b/c this is a passion area for me).  It is fashioned somewhat after Mark Holman's idea of "Faith-at-Home" from his books (which you can find info about online).
Our leadership had Mark Holman come and do a weekend event at our church before I came which was the impetus to starting FJIF.  I oversee a team of 5 other people (6 total with me) in which we share responsibilities to organize, conduct and teach the take-it-home events.

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