Two weeks ago your Conference Council of Children's Ministers met via zoom to discuss if we would be able to fit all the connectional aspects that make Quest so successful for children into the guidelines for CDC COVID 19.

If we removed the large group worship, the rotating groups of children, the filling rice bags, and lunchtime bounce houses to meet the safety guidelines we wouldn't be able to create the Quest connectional environment which is one of the top goals for holding Quest.

Since we have churches from all over our great state, it would be a contact tracing nightmare if an outbreak would occur. Since that meeting, the Governor shared research that Arkansas COVID 19 spread is not expected to peak until September 30 of 2020.

Sadly your CCCM council unanimously voted to postpone Quest to next September 25, 2021. Cindy Burns and her team have graciously agreed to host us all next year.
Children’s ministry has taken many different approaches so far this year! Ministry has moved to online worship, wearing PPE as you visit family's porches, drive-by VBS curriculum pick-up, and even drive-in communion for families. However, what is not different in ministry are caring Children’s Ministers planning ahead for a time when we can all come together in a space and learn the scripture, share a snack, play a game, and maybe even a side hug! I want to share with you three Children’s Ministers who not only have moved their ministry to online classes but when they are not behind the camera they are redesigning their educational spaces in their churches.

So often evaluating the use of a space and its aesthetics gets put at the bottom of the list of things that need to be done. Tiffany Jones, Stephanie Dunn, and Jessica Butler are Children’s Ministers who took advantage of weeks of empty classrooms and a little creativity sparked by Pinterest. They never have time during normal ministry seasons to freshen up an entrance hallway or go through old material that has been “stored” in what was once a viable classroom. It may take time, but eventually, we will all be together again. Why not use this time to clean and redesign? Use it as a promotion when you get to open the Children's Ministry programming again!

Here are five helpful suggestions before you begin:

1.       Organizing materials helps you know what you have and how to get to them quickly. You end up spending less of your education budget on duplicate items.

2.       A fresh coat of paint and a decluttered space creates a warm and welcoming environment for children and adult who volunteer in the space.

3.       No need for big-budget renovations. A can of paint $35, wall stickers $100, new curtains (ask the church sewing group) I am sure they will donate supplies and talents. Dollar Tree or Five and Below have many affordable storage containers for classrooms.

4.       Normally children’s education rooms are left to that ministry to choose how it is decorated, but always check with your senior pastor before painting over something that you may not know has historical value to the church.

5.       Often purging outdated material, re-homing furniture, and stocking the room with spiritually inspirational material is all a room needs.
Tiffany Jones of FUMC Beebe
Before pictures:
Beebe After pictures:
Stephanie Dunn Jacksonville FUMC:
Jacksonville After pictures:
Jessica Butler at Bryant FUMC Before Pictures:
Bryant After Pictures:
You may have seen Karen Swales share this on our Facebook page last week and wonder how was this made? Well, Amanda Worthy from Springdale UMC created the Bitmoji room you see above. If you click on the picture above it will take you to her church website where she has embedded this fun and interactive Sunday School classroom for families.

Children can navigate the room by clicking on the items in the room to get a lesson, videos, activities or calendar information on registrations. This was born out of teachers needing to connect with students during the pandemic, but I can see this sticking around as well as being developed for so many parts of Children's Ministry. You could also send this out each week in an email as well a posting on website. Amanda shared with me the YouTube video that she found most helpful as she learned how to create this interactive way to connect with her Springdale families.

If you have further questions about creating your own Bitmoji Sunday school room please reach out to the talented Amanda Worthy by email: aworthy@firstchurchspringdale.org
Tiffany Jones and Virginia Brown came up with this fun way to connect with all members of their church.They are homesick to all be back together in the church walls. This app allowed them to take pictures of locations in their church and make a prayer journal. They sent it out to all church members young and old. I could also see this being used in an online worship service since it happens in a casual living room setting.
July 30, 2020
Zoom meeting:
Virtual VBS!
I would love to write an article for the conference publication sharing pictures and stories about your first ever online Vacation Bible School. I see a few of you have just started yours and I know a lot of you are holding yours in July.

If you would like your church and kids featured all over the state, please send me the pictures by July 22. They will be in the August email to conference pastors and laity. Send pictures and stories to:
I was lucky enough to be visiting camp the day the new Tanako signage was getting hung! It was a little sad to see the old sign go, but the new sign gave such a fresh and inviting new look to the camp entrance! Kayla has been using the Pandemic closure the same way you have, she has been organizing, prepping, and planning for when the kids get to come back. Check out the video she and I made today. When you see it on
Facebook feel free to share it on your church pages!
For your planning purposes get these dates on the church calendar:
Dates to remember :
  • Annual Conference will be on Zoom. Check arumc.org for details.
  • Quest September 26, 2020