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Karl, I wanted to tell you -WOW- Did my son Love your book, The Order of the Ancient. I need to get some more copies this year so I can give them out, and put it in our church library. Our copy is too worn to lend anymore :) Great Job!! Thanks.
-Katie Lougman Anchorage, Alaska
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pjohnst4
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Posted: 18 February 2013 at 11:37pm | IP Logged Quote pjohnst4

Hey everyone,

My name is Peter, in addition to being a Children's Pastor I am also finishing my Masters of Divinity in Seminary. This semester I am taking a history class and am writing my term paper on the history of children's ministry in the United States starting with age graded Sunday Schools in the mid 1800s to the present day.

Please help me with my research by listing 5 of what you would consider to be the most influential events, people, or movements in American children's ministry.
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Posted: 19 February 2013 at 8:35am | IP Logged Quote Mr Phil

Hello Peter

What a cool subject, I must admit I am not well versed in the history of children's ministry. That being said I would offer up DL Moody's work with kids. His Sunday school work and YMCA work was a big influence in the work to come later. I am sorry I can't offer more on the subject. If you are willing I would be very interested in reading the paper when finished.

Lord Bless
Phil

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Posted: 19 February 2013 at 9:03am | IP Logged Quote wbman

Hi Peter,

I would check out Child Evangelism Fellowship. Mr. O CEF's founder was a peer to DL Moody and began CEF in 1937. It has impacted many children and trained many workers.

God used Charles Spurgeon's sermons which stated, "A child of five, if properly instructed can as truly believe and be regenerated as an adult." to be the catalyst that started CEF.

Blessings on your research!

Tom

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Posted: 19 February 2013 at 10:21am | IP Logged Quote franktan14123

In the history of Christian Education/Sunday School including but not restricted to children, Henrietta Mears would be a major influence. I would suggest checking with Gospel Light for any resources on this.

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BMartin
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Posted: 19 February 2013 at 5:59pm | IP Logged Quote BMartin

I concur with the ones suggest so far...


For modern, I would also add Jim Wideman and his ministry, Kidology has helped shaped a lot of thought, Promiseland out of Willow Creek, Think Orange.

Also, changes in overall education have had an impact as various Kidmin have studied learning theory and applied that to ministry, such as multiple intelligence.
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Glen Woods
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Posted: 19 February 2013 at 7:53pm | IP Logged Quote Glen Woods

I know the parameters of your paper limit you to the USA and the mid-1800s forward. However, the works of Wesley (18th cent) and Calvin (16th cent) were seminal in informing religious education and spiritual nurture of children thereafter. You can get an idea of what I mean by downloading for free something I wrote a few years back. You can get it here. Go to chapter two, page thirty-two. Also check out the bibliography.

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Wanda Parker
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Posted: 19 February 2013 at 9:27pm | IP Logged Quote Wanda Parker

Building on what Glen mentioned. J.I. Packer and Gary Parrett in "Grounded in the Gospel" give an overview of how children were taught. The changes that came about which perhaps over familiarized children with the stories of the Bible without giving them real understanding or the true purpose of the stories (my paraphrase).

Dr. Larry Richards wrote "A Theology of Children's Ministry" in the 1970's. If you haven't taken a look at this classic I would suggest you do. I haven't found another book that is as thorough as this in regard to Children's Ministry.


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pjohnst4
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Posted: 20 February 2013 at 12:18pm | IP Logged Quote pjohnst4

Wow, these comments and insights have been really helpful. While I am familiar with many of the people and organizations you all have listed, I have not heard of others, like Henrietta Mears.

PLEASE keep them coming.
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Glen Woods
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Posted: 20 February 2013 at 1:23pm | IP Logged Quote Glen Woods

Howard Hendricks should be included in this conversation, too. Find his books and videos and devour them.

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Wanda Parker
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Posted: 20 February 2013 at 3:26pm | IP Logged Quote Wanda Parker

Howard Hendricks is a good one to remember. He just went home.

http://www.dts.edu/read/howard-hendricks-prof/



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franktan14123
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Posted: 20 February 2013 at 4:59pm | IP Logged Quote franktan14123

In terms of children's ministry specifically, I'm not sure how Prof (Howard Hendricks) would fit in directly, but he has been a major voice in Christian education for the latter half of the 20th century. Many would credit him with promoting creativity in Bible teaching.

His wikipedia has just been updated today to include his homegoing.

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Glen Woods
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Posted: 23 February 2013 at 11:53am | IP Logged Quote Glen Woods

franktan14123 wrote:
In terms of children's ministry specifically, I'm not sure how Prof (Howard Hendricks) would fit in directly, but he has been a major voice in Christian education for the latter half of the 20th century. Many would credit him with promoting creativity in Bible teaching.

His wikipedia has just been updated today to include his homegoing.


Hendricks fits in as a precursor to much of what we currently take for granted in children's ministry. You mention part of it yourself when you noted was a major voice in Christian education and he promoted creativity in Bible teaching. His writing and teaching influenced many in children's ministry both directly and indirectly.

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franktan14123
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Posted: 23 February 2013 at 12:26pm | IP Logged Quote franktan14123

Glen Woods wrote:
Hendricks fits in as a precursor to much of what we currently take for granted in children's ministry. You mention part of it yourself when you noted was a major voice in Christian education and he promoted creativity in Bible teaching. His writing and teaching influenced many in children's ministry both directly and indirectly.


Having studied under "Prof" Hendricks, I would not minimize his influence on many involved in children's ministry, but if Peter pursues this approach of listing and drawing out the various indirect influences on the history of children's ministry, this would be a huge project.

Ivy Beckwith attempted to start a project like this a few years ago but backed off, citing practical needs for funding (certainly implying the point of how extensive an exhaustive history of children's ministry and the various influences could be).

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Posted: 23 February 2013 at 12:30pm | IP Logged Quote franktan14123

BTW, Glen, it's good to interact with you here on kidology. I've missed you and the Portland kidmin network.


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Glen Woods
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Posted: 23 February 2013 at 1:16pm | IP Logged Quote Glen Woods

franktan14123 wrote:


Having studied under "Prof" Hendricks, I would not minimize his influence on many involved in children's ministry, but if Peter pursues this approach of listing and drawing out the various indirect influences on the history of children's ministry, this would be a huge project.

Ivy Beckwith attempted to start a project like this a few years ago but backed off, citing practical needs for funding (certainly implying the point of how extensive an exhaustive history of children's ministry and the various influences could be).


Frank, your point certainly is well taken. However, my point is that he was one of the seminal influencers on thought leaders within contemporary church education and children's ministry. Certainly, it would be impossible to discern or trace every tangible line of influence pertaining to this topic, even if the study strictly adheres to children's ministry alone. There are far too many unsung heroes who have helped shape kids ministry and who will never be acknowledged this side of eternity for their contributions.


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Posted: 23 February 2013 at 1:24pm | IP Logged Quote Glen Woods

franktan14123 wrote:
BTW, Glen, it's good to interact with you here on kidology. I've missed you and the Portland kidmin network.
I've missed you too, Frank! Lets chat on the phone sometime soon. Much has happened since we last saw each other. I'm totally out of touch with the Portland network but if I see any of them I will pass along your greetings!

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Posted: 23 February 2013 at 1:52pm | IP Logged Quote franktan14123

pjohnst4 wrote:
My name is Peter, ... am writing my term paper on the history of children's ministry in the United States ...


Peter, I'm assuming you're still limiting this to a term paper rather than a dissertation.

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pjohnst4
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Posted: 24 February 2013 at 11:57pm | IP Logged Quote pjohnst4

Yes Frank, I am only writing a term paper, and while I may not be able include all of the people and events listed in this forum in my paper, I do intend on researching all of them just for my personal benefit.

In case any one was wondering this paper is for a normal church history class covering the Great Reformation to the modern day, but thankfully my professor is letting me write on the history of kidmin because he wanted to let the paper serve both an academic and practical purpose

Also, maybe one day this could morph into a greater project.

If anyone has anything else they want to add I would appreciate the input.

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Posted: 25 February 2013 at 10:09am | IP Logged Quote Kidologist

I have a vast library of old kidmin books... I need to take a look at them.

Also not mentioned yet is DL Moody... I have the honor of being the first children's pastor to follow him on staff at the church he founded, Moody Church. While he is known primarily as the Billy Graham of the previous generation, his ministry began as a children's evangelist and he had a HUGE impact on the creation and growth of Sunday School. At a time when many churches were supported by 'rented pews' Moody rented pews for street kids. When he was told the children weren't welcome in church (Big Church) he started a Sunday School for street kids that grew so big and well respected that Abraham Lincoln visited one Sunday to see it for himself! Imagine having the President of the United States drop in to see your kids ministry. Moody was passionate about kids but as his ministry grew, his focus shifted to adults.

He said at the end of his life, "If I had my life to live over again, I would devote it entirely to reaching children with the Gospel."

His school is still training kids workers to this day!

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Posted: 25 February 2013 at 10:30am | IP Logged Quote Kidologist

Mr Phil wrote:
... I would offer up DL Moody's work with kids. His Sunday school work and YMCA work was a big influence in the work to come later. Phil

Oops, sorry Phil - you did mention DL Moody! You are right, he had a big influence on future folks who added even more.
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Posted: 25 February 2013 at 10:31am | IP Logged Quote Kidologist

Peter, I'd love to see your paper when it is done!
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Posted: 25 February 2013 at 7:33pm | IP Logged Quote franktan14123

One of the lines of inquiry that may be helpful for you, Peter, is to check in with INCM and ask for a list of Legacy Awards or similar lifetime ministry awards given out in this year's or previous year's CPC's. It would be helpful for you to also inquire about the specific contributions of those people to children's ministry as represented by their awards.

Karyn Henley, Steve and Cora Alley, Dale and Liz VonSeggen, Miriam J. Hall, Larry Fowler, Jim Wideman, Beth Guckenberger, and Phil Vischer are among some of those awardees.

In 2000 Children's Ministry Magazine (Group Publishing) also compiled a list of the top ten people who have influenced children's ministry in the 1990's.

I can think of other influences in many different areas of the children's ministry movement that would include George Barna, Johnny Rogers, Willie George, Reggie Joiner, Roger Fields, Bruce Barry, Rob Evans, and to a certain degree, the Children's Bible Hour.

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Posted: 26 February 2013 at 6:39pm | IP Logged Quote Kidologist

franktan14123 wrote:
One of the lines of inquiry that may be helpful for you, Peter, is to check in with INCM and ask for a list of Legacy Awards or similar lifetime ministry awards given out in this year's or previous year's CPC's.

It would be nice is INCM had those on their website. They only recently renamed the award to "Legacy Award," it used to be called the "Lifetime Achievement Award," our own Kidology Coach, Barney Kinard is a recipient!

Are you referring to CM Mag's Top Twenty Leaders in the Past 20 years? I was not aware of a Top 10 in 2000, I'd love to see that if they did.
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