Have you ever thought to acknowledge or engage with the children or teenagers when standing chatting to their parents at church?…
Recent research uncovered this concerning statistic:
* 33.6% of children/teens felt adults hardly ever connected with them except the Children’s Ministry team and family. They felt adults mainly ignored them at church…
How often have you had an child, or an awkward impatient teen standing alongside their parents at church waiting for the conversation to end and made no reference to them during that time? or had the child wander off around the church to find entertainment while mum & dad were caught in conversation that never included them?
E.M is currently researching the importance of intergenerational relationships to help kids feel welcome, engaged and part of church life. Increased ‘intergenerational contact’ has proven to be one of the important factors that keep kids from dropping out of church.
There are lots of ways we can make a bigger effort to include and engage with children in our gatherings.
Simply making a practice of acknowledging and engaging with kids as you chat with their parents is a good start…or say hello to kids/teens as you pass them in and out of church …in the car park…coming out of kids club…at the morning tea counter…say hi even if you don’t know them…it all helps kids feel welcome, important and included…so let’s work at being more intentional in how we include the smallest in the kingdom…why not start this Sunday!