• 25 May 2023

Re–igniting children and families ministry

At the beginning of May, the Board for Ministry with Children and Families held its first online seminar for volunteers, staff and clergy looking at the challenges of re–igniting ministry with families following the pandemic.

Over 50 people attended the seminar representing all the dioceses and a broad spectrum of church situations – from the large churches with established programmes of activities, to the smaller churches who are keen to start or restart their children and families ministry.

The talk was given by Development Officer Rachael Murphy, who hopes that these online events will become a regular fixture in the Church of Ireland calendar, will cover a variety of topics, and involve different speakers over the coming year.

During the evening the group considered recent changes in society and how these have impacted the relationship between church and families, explored the CFM Health Check app (which is a new way for parishes to review the ways they engage with children and families), and looked at current research findings and considered the ways in which our churches might respond.  The attendees also broke into groups based on geographical similarities, and shared ideas that they had tried or wished to try in order to establish and develop relationships with parents and carers.

The feedback on the event was very positive, and some of the responses given regarding the ‘take aways’ from the session included the following comments:

  • ‘That instead of worrying about numbers, we should concentrate on the children and families that we have and build strong relationships with them.’
  • ‘There were lots of ideas that we could adapt to suit our community.’
  • ‘I’m reminded again how Children and Families Ministry is responsibility of the whole church.’
  • ‘A great new resource to the Church of Ireland.  Looking forward to the next one.’

Information on the next training event will be shared on the CFM social media pages and via email to those who sign up for the CFM newsletter on the website: www.cfm.ireland.anglican.org

Explore the HealthCheck app at THIS LINK.