by Abbey Carr
Okay, I’ll admit it. I am a recovering ministry conference jumper, or, as I like to call it, a MCJ. It’s not something I’m proud of, but it’s the truth. There are a lot of us out there in church world.
For years, as an MCJ, I refused to attend the same ministry conference twice. I thought I had learned all that I possibly could that one year at “Fill in the Blank” Conference. I’d been there. Done that. Gotten the T-shirt (and the lanyard, the cool journal to take notes in, the mini-stress ball—my favorite—and all of the other awesome conference swag). Didn’t my ministry team and I deserve to go somewhere fresh, new and exciting each year? It’s just so obvious, right?
Well, as a recovering MCJ I can tell you with assurance that this, in fact, is not true at all. Not when it comes to The Orange Conference.
You see, at The Orange Conference, we welcome MCJs, recovering MCJs and total newbies alike. All are welcome! We have a team of people who FOCUS on making sure that the experience and overall content is engaging, relevant and new, whether it’s your first time at OC or it’s your gazillionth and one (not that that’s even possible).
Check out just a few of the amazing new breakouts that we are offering for Children’s leaders this time around at Orange Conference 2013:
Children’s Orange Interactive (3 Hours)
Orange Interactives give us the space to explain the Orange Strategy in depth, and to train on a specific curriculum. If you’ve never used our curriculum before, or need a refresher or some help with our strategy, then Orange Interactives are for you. During the three hours, those attending will be given a mini orientation meeting, a Large Group experience, a Small Group experience, worship, and we’ll cover small church ministry adaptations specifically as it relates to children’s ministry and the 252 Basics curriculum. If you’re wanting hands-on training on Orange stuff, then you need to be in an Orange Interactive.
Building a Winning Children’s Volunteer Team
In this breakout, we will discuss the fundamentals of building a strengths-based volunteer/staff team for your children’s ministry. We will discuss practical steps pertaining to volunteer recruitment, such as how to communicate ministry policies and procedures and examples of what that looks like; developing and communicating roles effectively; best practices on team training; and how to place volunteers in their “sweet spot,” therefore increasing staff and volunteer retention from year to year. Whether your team is big or small, brand new or you’ve been together for years, you will walk away from this breakout with new ideas about how to cultivate and maintain the best out of your ministry team from here forward.
Implementing Strategy for Elementary Kids in my Current Church Situation
This workshop will cover all aspects of implementing the Orange Strategy regardless of what church environment you serve in. We will discuss effectively communicating the strategy, scheduling programming, curriculum adaptation, volunteers, partnering with parents, long-term goals and more! You will not want to miss out on this discussion if you serve in a more traditional church and are currently implementing the Orange Strategy, using Orange materials, or are planning to use Orange curriculum.
Reaching Tweens: Effectively Ministering to 4th-6th Graders
The topic of “tweens” may create a big question mark to form over your head. What will engage them? How can we reach them? How do we get this group of kids from the back of the room with their arms folded to the front of the room interacting? This breakout will address why Tweens are the way they are, why they do what they do and best practices for effectively ministering to this pivotal, elusive 4th- to 6th-grade age group.
Need more? Another thing we’ve added for 2013 are Track Champions and a greater explanation of our tracks. You can learn more about the goals of the Children’s Ministry Track here as well as the Family Experience (FX) and Middle School Track.