Better communication between the church and parents means a more effective learning experience for children. Plus, it boosts the feeling of connectedness within your church. Whether through handy church apps that keep parents involved in the kids’ ministry curriculum or simply a church management software that facilitates easy conversation, prioritizing church communications is key.
Read on for some highly effective ways of strengthening relationships with parents at your church today.
Why should we partner with parents?
If a child goes to church every single Sunday for a year, they will spend around 40 hours with the church. Now, consider how much time they will spend with their families. It is no surprise that parents are the number one influence in a child’s life, so getting them on board with your children’s ministry curriculum and its goals is the most effective way of boosting faith from the inside out.
Choose a curriculum that works with families
Assess your current curriculum by asking yourself important questions about how the parents are involved. Do they know what their children are currently learning? Are they implementing anything at home to encourage the development of their child’s faith? If your ministry leaders have not communicated any of these things to their families, the likely answer is no.
Making an effort to involve parents in their child’s learning journey will boost it tenfold. If they are still building their relationship with God when at home, the roots of their faith will grow more deeply than just attending Sunday school alone. The Think Orange curriculum successfully merges family life with the ministry for a strong curriculum that caters to children of every age.
Use apps for churches and parents
The more accessible your communication channels are, the more effective they will be. If parents have to jump through hoops to get a decent response from the kids’ ministry leaders, they probably won’t bother. So, using software that facilitates effortless conversation will make mass texting a breeze. When compared with emails, texts get opened faster, more frequently, and have a higher response rate.
Or, download the specially designed Orange apps that complement kids’ ministry. Parent Cue delivers reminders and updates directly to parents’ phones, so they won’t miss a thing. Through this app parents can message the leaders of their child’s ministry session directly, send prayer requests, and more, boosting communication like never before.
Listen to the opinions of parents
When an issue arises within the kids' ministry, it can feel easier to find a solution behind closed doors. Every parent has a different opinion, so inviting them to share can feel like opening Pandora's box. But, what if we changed our approach to this and placed value on their thoughts instead? The church is not separate from the community — the church is the community.
This doesn’t have to look like an overly formal discussion panel or Q&A, It could simply be a suggestion box placed at your church on Sundays. Or, take it one step further and arrange a semi-regular potluck where parents, kids, volunteers, and church leaders can gather together and discuss their thoughts. Strengthen your ministry by you sharing stories, laughing together, and growing together.
Treat all families with equal respect
Unfortunately, many people navigate this world with negative biases, including those who work within the church. Often these are deeply ingrained, and people forget to question why they disregard one family quicker than the next. To show your church members that you truly care, you must put steps in place to prevent stereotyping from getting in the way.
Instead of judging a single mom who can’t make it to a ministry meeting as being disinterested, consider the other factors at play. Similarly, don’t bring preconceptions about families with different socio-economic statuses to the table. We all have our own struggles, so be kind to everyone and take care to open doors for families that might otherwise get left behind.
Provide open hours for parents
Schools offer specific times for parents to come in and meet the educators of their kids, so what's stopping us? Allowing families to get to know the people behind the ministry creates an open environment of trust and understanding. Make an effort to create a warm and welcoming environment, and watch how your community thrives in response.
To ensure everyone receives an invitation to these open hours, why not schedule a 15-minute slot per family per semester? That way, if they want to attend, both kids and parents can come together to voice any opinions they may have. It offers a unique opportunity to get to know the families on a deeper level and vice versa.
Take some of these church communication ideas on board to strengthen relationships between parents and ministry leaders at your church. Open communication channels by using an instant messaging app and make sure the parents know exactly what their kids are up to. Everyone will benefit when parents are more closely integrated, so what’s stopping you?