If you’re new to the role of deacon, or gathering helpful tools for those who are joining the council, you’ll find plenty of helpful resources on The Network.
Welcome to the Network for Sunday School Ministry! Whether you coordinate the children’s ministries, organize the Sunday school program, or lead a small group of second and third graders, I hope this site will be a reliable source of support for your ministry! In case you’re curious, here’s the scoop on me: I grew up Catholic and United Methodist before joining the CRC with my family as a teenager. My ecumenical upbringing has given me a great love for the church in all its flavors—and a deep appreciation for the Reformed theology we cherish. This is my second time around as the Sunday School Network guide, and a lot has changed for me in the time between! The biggest change is motherhood-- little Sophie Howe was born on March 3, 2012. Life has been full of gratitude, joy, and chaos ever since! We're learning how to be a family of 3 and how to juggle worship, work, and time with family and friends. I've stepped away from the role of Sunday school coordinator to give myself space to learn and enjoy this new role. We've also joined a new church, Church of the Servant, which is a place we've developed many deep friendships over the years. We trust that God has led us there to find support and give support to many other new parents as we learn and grow together. This time around, as guide, I hope to tap into the wisdom and experience of many other people who are serving or have served in Sunday school and faith formation ministries. I hope to invite many new people to add their ideas and inspiration to the blogs you see featured week after week. Thanks for joining me on this journey!
It happens all the time in our ministries—new babies are born, family dynamics change, a time of adjustment occurs, until finally a new normal is established.
Have you come across something or developed something to help kids learn about and experience the spiritual habit of fasting? By fasting, I don't necessarily mean fasting from food, but abstaining from something for a specific period of time for the sake of seeking God more fully.
With just 40 minutes for Sunday school it's been hard for me to squeeze in prayer time. What's worked for you? I need some ideas!
A podcast on the power of ritual in shaping faith and giving structure and meaning to life.
How can we make listening a key part of our time together with kids?
I always like to spend a few minutes playing a getting-to-know-you game on the first day of Sunday school. Here are two of my favorites.
Look here for helpful support for Elders!
The answer seems obvious: to teach the Bible story or lesson we've been assigned. But I wonder if it's more nuanced than that.
This article by Jim Merhaut describes why emotional intelligence (EIQ) can be a better predictor of leadership success than IQ. It includes a link to an EIQ test that includes practical ideas for boosting your EIQ to make you a more effective leader.
Well deserved, Mark!posted on: Mark Stephenson Recognized for Network Blogs
My son was baptized on Sunday. It reminded me again that we belong before we believe! I agree that we get that backwards too often. While preaching on the great commission (which he called the...posted on: Voluntary and Temporary Community
Amen!posted on: On Writing Songs
Thanks Kris, this is a helpful list!posted on: Justice Books to Read in 2015
Thanks for the advice, Mary & John! Sounds like starting right off with prayer would be the best plan. Maybe I'll ask them to fill out a prayer request card as they walk in the door and place...
It's incredible to see a Network post generate such a lively debate! In order to keep the conversation open to comments from new voices, please consider these tips from the Network comment...posted on: My Banner Article
Thanks for highlighting that link, Ken!posted on: Got Anything for Elder's Training?
This is awesome, Shannon! Our church is hoping to launch some interest groups this season and my desire is to see these spaces be places where those who are older and younger can build lasting...
I've appreciated your articles, Abigail and hope to read more from you in the future! Many blessings in your studies this year.posted on: Right Here and to the Ends of the Earth
When I was working as a youth director at Hope Reformed Church (RCA) in Clifton, NJ we always sang the doxology after the offering as the plates were brought forward after the money was collected...posted on: What's Happened to the Doxology?