1. General remarks
Children’s ministry is an age-appropriate offer to experience and live out faith for children and teenagers in Network Church. This is offer takes place mainly during our Sunday service. Whenever possible, additional activities will complement the offer during the week. Our goal of a variety of activities is that children and teenagers can get to know God, experience faith and have their own faith.
Our staff mainly works on a voluntary basis, just the children’s ministry leadership works for Network Church in a part-time job.
The foundation for working with children and teenagers is the assumption that every human is created by God in their individuality. That is why we want to reach out to children and teenagers respectfully and in an appreciating way. We want to give them values such as self-confidence, love, and good boundaries.
Above all else, we want to strengthen all children and teenagers entrusted to us, and we want to protect them from physical and emotional violence.
2. General conditions
Our children’s and teenager’s ministry is divided in four different age groups.
For children aged 0-3 years, the relationship with their parents as primary caregivers is most important. That is why, there is a parent-child-meeting during the week and a separated broadcasting room during Sunday service – here, parents can play with their children during service. Beginning from the age of 3 until starting school, children can be part of children’s ministry on Sundays in the group “Arche Noah” (Noah’s ark). When they start school, they change to the group “Bibelentdecker” (exploring the bible).
When they start attending high school/secondary school/grammar school, the teenagers can take responsibility for certain tasks, such as technical equipment oder children’s ministry. There will be meetings alongside Sunday services, where they can talk with each other and study the bible together.
Activities take place in our church facilities or, upon consultation, outside on playgrounds in the nearby area.
3. Focus areas
3.1 Experience faith, live faithfully
We believe …
- children and teenagers can have a lively relationship with God every bit as adults.
- children and teenagers can choose a life with God deliberately.
- children and teenagers can be attentive God’s voice and live out gifts of the Spirit.
- we want to live faith as role models.
- we want to teach the children God’s truths.
- we want to enable them to encounter God and experience him.
- we want to explain biblical truths appropriate for children.
Our main focus is the personal relationship with God of every staff member and an active faith life.
3.2 Prevent physical and emotional violence against children and teenagers
An important part of our ministry is to protect children and teenagers from physical and emotional violence, as well as strengthen them to protect themselves.
On the one hand, we have structural strategies: when new staff members (voluntary or employed) are chosen and start their work, we have a code of conduct as a mandatory basis. Another factor is an easy-access appeal procedure with confidential persons as contact partners.
On the other, we have pedagogic strategies: strengthen children and teeangers. Central topics are principles based on children’s rights:
- the right to trust their own feelings
- the right to decide for themselves on pleasant and unpleasant touching
- the right to decide for themselves on their own body
- the right to say no
- the right to pass on “bad” secrets
(Source: „Erziehung zwischen Anstand und Selbstbestimmung“, AWO Kinder- und Jugendhilfe gemeinnützige GmbH (ed.), first published in 2013)
These principles can be taught in every age group and thus, children can be strengthened individually. Staff members are trained by our children’s ministry leaders or church leaders on a regular basis.
Appeal procedure (German)
Mandatory code of conduct (English)