Churches Surprised at Far-Reaching Impact of Ministry for Children of Divorce
April 28, 2010
WAKE FOREST, N.C., (christiansunite.com) -- Churches across the nation are reaching out and helping children whose parents are separated or divorced. The DivorceCare for Kids (DC4K) weekly, lay-driven ministry program is having a powerful effect on children and their parents. But what may be surprising is the impact of DC4K on the church itself.
Greg Stanford, children's minister at Tenth & Broad Church of Christ, Wichita Falls, TX, has observed church members becoming more proactive in wanting to help families outside the church. "The greatest fruit I have seen at our church from DivorceCare for Kids is a new awareness and new compassion for divorced families, not only in our church but in our community."
DC4K has been found to grow churches, introduce people to Christ, help decrease behavior issues and lessen staff counseling loads.
The number of children attending DC4K from outside the church excites church leaders, because when children come to church, their parents come too. "We average eight children, and none of them belong to our church," explained Ross, a DC4K lay leader in Grand Blanc, MI.
As more people attend the church, more hear the gospel message. Every child in DC4K learns about Christ's love through the modeling of group leaders, scripture songs, games, prayers and activity books. "Children come to Christ, and parents come to Christ as a result of their children," said Glenn Bosworth, who leads DC4K at Davisville Church, Southampton, PA.
Sunday school teachers and children's ministers have reported fewer disruptions and behavior issues by children who struggled previously, but who now attend DC4K. And parents have reported that, after their children participate in DC4K, their children do better in school, communicate better and express their emotions in a healthier manner.
Pastors and church staff who often struggle to meet the many needs in a church body on their own are thankful for this lay-led program. Stanford praises the comprehensive, yet easy-to-use, training materials and lessons. "We have team members that are teachers, some are bankers, some are firemen. All of our team members have been able to pick up a lesson plan, read through it and lead the session without any problems."
For information about starting a DivorceCare for Kids ministry, go to www.dc4k.org/startagroup/?impact