@julie burton posted:
Two years ago we had 17 children on roll under age 8. None of them attended Sunday School. Since the pandemic, I have learned we have lost several of those families to churches that have live children's programs that meet during worship. Also, our leadership doesn't participate in the education program. I have been asked to meet with two new elders who have been made chair of Christian Education, but haven't attended in years. The Associate Pastor has tried to keep the children's program going, but there is little support from the Senior pastor. Where do I start???
Hi Julie, old friend!
You are such an amazing Christian educator that I have to believe you have been put there "for just such a time as this."
I've helped lead two Sunday School "complete rebuilds" starting with very few kids and not a lot of hands-on support from the Senior Pastor. Sometimes their "benign neglect" is okay as long as they are permission-givers rather than interferers. Silver lining?
It sounds like your "future Sunday School" is in your preschool room right now. So I would encourage you to begin family ministry with them. Other than seniors, the parents of preschoolers are the age group MOST interested in being together. They are keen on family, friendships, and child-rearing subjects. Their presence and energy also attracts other young families. The "blest ties" you help nurture among them will also pay-off in Sunday School attendance as those kids grow up.
Hope this helps. I have memories full of ideas so feel free to PM me to further pick my brain ...such as it is.
P.S. It was the similar question of "where is my future youth group right now?" that turned my heart toward children's ministry 30 years ago.