Children

Why I Love ToddleAlong

I am proud and humble to have been called by God to be responsible for bringing small children and their carers into the presence of God at ToddleAlong.

A lot of the adults have noticed something special about our group – some have even said it is the best group in Fleet.

I call it ‘Mothers Sanctuary!' It is a venue where both adults and children feel safe. The children love the variety of toys and books, and the adults enjoy a chance to have conversations with people who are in the same situation as themselves. Some good friendships have been forged which will carry on as they meet up outside schools while they wait for the children to come out.

What I love to see is a shy and nervous small child blossom into a confident little person ready to go on to preschool and then 'big school'. At the same time the adults enjoy the camaraderie whilst singing songs followed by tea or coffee and chocolate digestives which taste so much better at ToddleAlong.

- Angela Parker

Find out more about Toddlealong at fleetbaptist.org.uk/toddlealong

5 Reasons I Love Children's Ministry

  1. I get to share the love of Jesus.  Matthew 9:37 Then Jesus said to his disciples, "The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few." Children are hungry to understand the bible and are even more hungry for encounters with Jesus. It doesn't happen everyday that the lights go on and a child really understands that God is real, alive and wants to share life with us. When that happens and they want to make a life changing decision to accept the love, peace and joy of Jesus, I get to be there when they do. 
  2. We all have different learning styles, I have never been good with sitting still and listening. I learn while moving, singing and engaging. I have learned so much more of the Bible through preparing children's lessons then having to act them out, sing them and make crafts out of them. I really love the interaction that comes up in the lessons. Children have such elastic brains to think of quirky connections, they question the bible with honesty and curiosity.
  3. Working with children is like glitter - The crafts are fun and you keep on finding bits of shiny for days afterwards in unexpected places!
  4. As a parent I know how much I appreciate the other parents, grandparents and friends who volunteer every week. They help teach our children in another trusted voice of authority. We are not alone in our faith there are others out there. To help us to hold onto core values of honour and respect, generosity and gratitude. They learn that they are never alone but can always call on Jesus when they mess up and go wrong. These skills are so important for our children growing up in today’s fast changing world. They have a lot to cope with in life and they will need these solid truths to anchor them. I want lots of positive role models in my own children's lives.
  5. Creating an environment for our children to have christian friends. The Bible tells us not to stop meeting together for good reason. Sometimes children lose interest in church as they develop into their adolescent years.  I believe that we have a huge responsibility to create a healthy support for our children among their peers, so that they can go on to really fly and go deeper in their faith with their friends. Camps and days together are key and it is not only the children who need this. Some of my best friends are the ones that have been fostered out in the open watching our children having a ball.

So when I wake up on a Monday morning and see glitter in the bottom of my shoes, I am reminded of the fun that we had the day before. I am reminded that God is alive His word is living and active in my life and it has power to heal and break any chain that binds us.

- Heather Bailey

Acacia

Following on from looking at generosity in the Bible and specifically, caring for widows and orphans, the Blaze group – ages 7 to 11 - got together and decided to support some children in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

The sponsorship programme covers school fees, levies, exercise books and book covering, uniform and some recreational outings. From time to time the children may also receive help with transport to clinic or nutritional food supplements. They will also go on an annual camp altogether to bond and learn social and leadership skills.

The children selected on the programme are all from the Mazwi Village community, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe and will attend either the St. Peter’s Primary School or Sizalendaba Secondary School. Home visits are made regularly from the Acacia team and regular updates sent to us about how they are getting on.

We are finding that through this initiative of giving we have not only been blown away by the kindness and generosity of the Blaze group but also we have made some new friends across the world whose world in very different from ours, but are so similar as they love and learn about Jesus.

- Heather Bailey (Powerhouse Oversight)

For more information check out their Facebook page here.