5 Characteristics of a Good Children’s Ministry Director

5 Characteristics of a Good Children’s Ministry Director

Your congregation and its families play an essential role in the life of your church. As a result, the man or woman who equips them in the ways of the Lord is crucial. So, here are 5 things to look for as you determine the next leader of your children's ministry.

1. A heart for God and children’s ministry

This person should be a born-again believer: a person who has put his or her faith in Christ as their Savior. He or she should have a love for children and families, be passionate about ministering to kids, and have a heart for families to grow in their knowledge and relationships with the Lord. All of these aspects will fuel the ministry.

Your ministry director should possess a proper motivation. He or she should be a person who does ministry for the Lord and realizes that what he or she does may only be noticed by God and are fully content with that. Many times, our children’s ministry leaders are unsung heroes, and so much of what they do goes unnoticed. Often, our kids either don’t or can’t say thank you. We sometimes see the fruit of this important ministry, but other times, we don’t truly realize the impact of our hard work until years down the line. However, our children’s ministry leaders do their ministry for the Lord; whether seen or unseen by others, they must trust Him with the results.

2. Solid discernment

Biblical and theological literacy and discernment are so important for our children’s ministry directors, as these leaders oversee the curriculum, teaching, and overall direction of the content for their children’s ministry. Additionally, discernment in the safety and protection of our children is essential. Without a safe environment for our children to thrive in, the entire ministry is at risk. This leader will be responsible for ensuring that our children’s overall environment and programming are as safe as possible. He or she should also be able to enact necessary policies and procedures to keep our kids protected. If a person is teachable and open to learning, he or she can be taught these principles.

3. Experience working with children in some capacity

If this leader has been a children’s director in the past, that would be an incredible advantage in your search to fill this role within your church. However, if your potential candidate has served in Sunday School, worked in an after-school program or daycare facility, or is even a parent who has experienced the fruit of this ministry firsthand, all of these types of exposure in working with kids would greatly benefit his or her role in planning for your children’s ministry and leading the children you’ve been entrusted to guide.

4. Leadership skills

Being an effective leader includes being able to build and lead volunteer teams. Some of the primary roles for a children’s director are recruiting, training, developing, and continually interacting with ministry volunteers. Therefore, this person should be able to recruit, lead, and work well with others. So much “people work” goes into doing this job—mostly in regard to interacting with kids and their families—but even more so as this leader serves to build up his or her volunteer team. These are truly the front lines of our children’s ministries.

An important part of building a volunteer team includes delegation. The goal, in essence, should be for the children’s ministry director to work himself or herself out of the job. This leader should seek to identify other leaders, train them, share the mission and vision with them, and delegate responsibilities to them. The director should be reproducing themselves in the volunteers, thus multiplying and equipping God’s people for the work of ministry. The ability to delegate to others will help the director be not only be effective, but to avoid burnout as well. This role in leadership also includes being able to cast vision. The director should be able to understand the vision and mission of why we do children’s ministry and be able to share it with others. He or she will be setting the tone and sharing the excitement for your children’s ministry and get others on board for it, too.

5. Competent administrative skills

Children’s ministry requires a good bit of administrative duties to help keep the ministry running and to help its operations run smoothly. This person should be competent in the administrative skills of scheduling volunteers, preparing curriculum, organizing crafts and projects, and overseeing safety policies and procedures. This may seem like an easy part of the job, but it takes a sufficient skillset to juggle all the small details involved in helping a children’s ministry thrive.

Not just anyone take on this role, which is why you’re on the lookout for the right leader for your congregation and its families. Your children’s director will be a key asset in the ministry, so seek to identify a leader with these qualities and pray for who God might have for this very important role in your church and for His kingdom.

Adapted from “Choose a Children’s Ministry Director” one session in the free course “10 Steps to Developing a Children’s Ministry.” Take the course here.

Published July 26, 2023

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