What does a comprehensive and holistic approach to developing students from birth through late adolescence and the families that influence these students mean to the infrastructure and ministry of the Next Generation Team?
#1 The Environments that are created
Environments evoke feeling and emotion, and learning takes place at a deeper level when emotion is attached to it. Therefore great care and strategy must be taken to ensure that the environments that are created are skillfully crafted to be culturally relevant both to the culture of the local church, and to the culture of the child, student, or parent. When we communicate (intentionally or unintentionally) that we are rejecting someone’s culture, we communicate that we are rejecting that person as well.
#2 The Language that is used to defines the culture
Every culture has its own language, at the very least its own distinct dialect. We must ensure that the language we choose to use fits not only who we are, but also who we desire to become.
#3 The way that Families are partnered with and supported
Ministry to the next generation cannot be done effectively divorced from the parental role and family structure. We need to move towards instituting directives that push parents and children towards one another in the scope of material that is taught as well as the strategic environments that we place them into.
#4 The future scope of Professional Staffing
A strategic plan for who to hire, when to hire, and what role to hire must be in place. We must develop an overarching intentional and proactive road map as well as an under girding philosophy for staffing this team. We must staff not only for who we are, but again, who we want to become.
#5 The Budgets and Resources that we are entrusted with
Learning to effectively share and leverage resources as a Next Generation Team will be essential to having a maximum impact on families. This includes not only budgeted dollars, facilities, and material resources; but also personnel, volunteers, and strategic partnerships with other ministries both inside and outside of the local church.
#6 The Scope of Curriculum that we teach
Everything that we do, teaches. Therefore we must take great care in not simply the scope of what is taught, but at what age it is taught, what environment it is taught in, how it is taught, and who is doing the teaching.
#7 The programs that we Calendar
Part of creating an effective and responsible annual calendar is to program and plan events so as to capitalize on the natural ebb and flow of life for children and students taking into account other institutions that clamor for the time of families such as schools and athletics. Another critical piece of creating an effective calendar is to take into consideration and match the life cycle of the church.
#8 The way that we Care for our Volunteers
Realizing that life change doesn’t take place outside the context of a relationship, our volunteers become the most important resource that we have available to us. Therefore our volunteers must feel valued, cared for, and resourced to accomplish their role. We must have a clear process in place for volunteer recruitment, assimilation, development, and care.
Posted in Family, Leadership, Spiritual Formation