Spring Creek is like most congregations that have seen their membership decline since "back in the day." The first thing most members say is we need more young families. We need more kids. However, what most congregations seem to believe is the kids and young families will simply show up some Sunday morning. Unfortunately, when there is a problem with the "synergy" due to a small group of kids, you need to have volunteers and activities for the kids!
Granted, I really like ministering to kids of all ages. I wish I could spend more time with them. The reality is, however, the kids and their families visiting Spring Creek don't always show up to assigned "faith formation" events like Bible Buddies, or they show up, and in many cases, there is no one to lead them. As well, many in congregations like our own hope someone else will do it because "we have done our service. Let the parents do it." As well, we expect the "pastor" to go out and get the kids to come. This burden is laid upon the pastor — interim or settled.
Sunday after Sunday there is a plea for a 2nd person to staff the nursery to allow us to fulfill our Safe Church Policy. At the present time, if we were to simply ask our parents to do that task, it would require taking people away from choir or the bell choir or serving in worship in other ways and would mean that each of our parents would be doing it once every six weeks. And when we talk about instructing our kids or helping prepare our classrooms, it is usually one person or two...who are the parents!
If Spring Creek has decided to be a thriving, transforming congregation, it is up to all of us to be "welcoming the children." Whether it is rocking a baby in the nursery, reading a story to pre-schoolers, or helping in our Bible Buddies, it takes all of us to fulfill those needs.
Fortunately, we have two upcoming opportunities where we can connect to families with young children! One is our upcoming "BooFest" on October 26th and an event called "The Advent Adventure" on December 2 from 4-7 PM. Could you possibly help in the following manner — serving pizza to the people attending; help kids with the craft; help with the Scavenger hunt, read a Christmas story; or help with singing Christmas songs? You will see more information out for this event in the upcoming weeks.
The BooFest is coming soon and we need more people to sign up for the various activities (see the bulletin board outside the restrooms for signing up).
Now is not the time to "dither" about whether Spring Creek wants to put itself in a position to be a welcoming church to kids and young families. If we do not come together to offer support for these great opportunities of hospitality and welcoming, then it makes a huge statement as to where our future visioning process will lead the Search Committee and this congregation.