Deuteronomy 6:4-7
Children are the Future Church and the NOW!
As your Conference Coordinator of Children's Ministry, I am here to support, advocate, educate, equip, and most importantly serve your ministry needs. Tell me how I can serve you and your church. melinda.shunk@arumc.org or call/text
515-707-5537
Fall has come to Camp Tanako after a busy summer. Tanako is a UMC campground located on the lakes of Hot Springs. It is a camp of many wonderful memories for children and their families. Kim Carter's family particularly since it was her childhood home as her father was the camp director. Kim took over as interim director and then on as camp director. Kim and her team have done amazing improvements to the grounds and the camp enrollments.

Just as the summer season has come to an end, Kim felt a call to work at Christian Health services starting on Oct. 4. A camp director job is 24/7 in the summer and working with a skeleton crew in winter. Kim has family needs that work best for a 8 a.m.-5 p.m. career field. Our last Tanako board meeting was full of celebration, thanksgiving and tears for the ministry Kim has lead over the years at Tanako.

Geoff will be the interim director this fall and winter. As Spring approaches, the Tanako board of directors pray that God will send the right person to lead the camp for the summer season. Due to the October staff changes, they will not be able to offer the October dates for Confirmation Camp, but plan to fill up the spring session.
All Saints Sunday is the Sunday after Halloween. Many churches recognize and celebrate those saints that have passed in the last year, but it the children are not taught about it. It will most likely not be found in any children’s curriculum that is taught in Sunday School class, but it is a holiday that makes for a wonderful Children’s Message for all ages.

Raise your hand if when you hear me say the words All Saints Sunday you immediately thought I was talking football. It is fall, it is a Sunday and we are in the South, so it is fair that some of the kids and adults may think that I am talking about Louisiana Saints football team when I said All Saints Sunday, but they would be mistaken.

John Wesley the founder of the United Methodist church once wrote in his journal that All Saints Sunday. “was a Festival that he truly loved!” He loved it because it was a day of remembering all those who have shared their faith. John Wesley lived his entire life sharing his faith. All Saints day is when we as a community of Christians remember all who may be alive and those have passed away who have used their life to share their faith in God.
(I am going to list some faith sharing ways. If you hear one you know or have experienced, I want you to give me a thumbs up.)
Some ways that those people may have shared their faith with us are those who teach us Sunday school, someone who hugged us when we needed one, someone who fed those who needed or wanted fed, those who built shelter for those who couldn’t, those who pray with those who needed prayed for each day, those who share their spiritual gifts to make life better for others.

Now while I set out these candles, I want you to think of that person in your life. (grab a package of tea lights and a long wick auto candle lighter. If you tend to have a large group, you will want to ask another grown-up to help you guide the candle lighting with the children If you feel you will have a group that may not be safe with flame get the simple battery powered candle light and turn it on and off as the child say the name.) On All Saints Sunday we think of the names of people who have shared their faith, we tell their story, we chime a bell, and we may even light a candle to mark that memory of them.

I am going to set out these small candles and say a name of person who have shared their faith as you say their name out loud and together we will light a candle for them together.  (or turn on the candle as the child says their saint.)

This month's Living Our Faith digital magazine is about Jacksonville and their Worship for All!
Click on article image to take you to a readable link!

We had a wonderful day together at Quest 2019! 225 children and adults packed into St. James in Little Rock. We filled rice bags for 200,000 Reasons, we were led in worship by the Quest Praise band. The Bishop offered us a message of call. We rotated to amazing teachers who shared God's word with us. We bounced, danced, created, and played after lunch. We closed our time together in celebration and a glow party. Thank you to St. James for hosting us and all the volunteers who helped make it happen.
If you did not make it this year, we hope to see you for Quest 2020!
We are currently planning the Beyond Conference for January 24 & 25, 2020! This is a conference created to help you with new ideas, examples, and uplifting speakers to help you grow in your expertise in children's ministry! Please be sure to invite your Children's Ministry team at your church, other church workers in neighboring churches,
Join the mentoring group with me! We will meet together or on zoom conference as it works for those involved. Don't get burned out in ministry. Contact melinda.shunk@arumc.org today!
Tanako Announces Confirmation Dates
5th -7th Grades
5th
Fall Confirmation Camp October 18-20, 2019
Spring Confirmation Camp March 6-8, 2020

Registration and more information can be found at:

We now have the ability to offer a scholarship to help defray the cost of hiring a Wonderfully Made trained educator to come your church. Please be sure to check out the Children's Ministry Web page to read the scholarship requirements and application process.

Dates to remember :
  • Beyond 2020 January 24 & 25, 2020
  • Annual Conference Hot Springs May 27 & 30, 2020