The RMCC Buddy Ministry was started when the Lord showed Heather Guigue and the Kids Ministry team that some families were not coming to church because their children were not comfortable attending Kids Church. Some children need extra support or help transitioning from parents to their classroom.
So, RMCC Kids Ministry started a ministry directed at helping kids who were having a difficult time focusing during the teaching time or connecting with other children in their classes. This ministry is important for the families. It allows parents to participate in the adult service knowing their children are safe and well cared for.
The Heart Behind the Buddy Ministry
The Buddy Ministry team shows children about Jesus’ love and helps them to apply God’s truth to their lives. Matthew 28:19-20 (NKJV) relates well to this ministry:
“’Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’ Amen.”
The purpose of the Buddy Ministry is to help children understand the gospel of Jesus Christ, and to learn more about Him, because that’s what the Great Commission tells us to do. A Buddy’s role is to support the child as they learn more about Jesus and His love for them.
The focus of the Buddy Ministry is based on three key truths:
- The Great Commission is for everyone because everyone needs faith.
- Faith is not hindered by a level of disability.
- Everyone is God’s treasure.
“Whoever receives one of these little children in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me, receives not Me but Him who sent Me (Mark 9:37, NKJV).”
What does a Buddy do?
A Buddy helps the child integrate into the class. This is done by sitting with the child, helping the child follow the teachers’ instructions, and encouraging participation. The Buddies want to make sure the children stay focused during class and redirect them if they get side-tracked.
More ways a Buddy helps a child include:
- Fostering a connection with the child they are supporting and the other children in the class.
- Simplifying the lesson so the child can understand if they’re having difficulty following along. Sometimes visuals such as props and aids may be used to help the child gain a better understanding.
- Accompanying a child to the large group teaching time to foster a connection to the larger Kids Church community.
The Buddies encourage and help each child to succeed while they’re participating in the Kids Church program.
The Buddy Ministry in Action
During the early days of RMCC’s Buddy Ministry, one of the children was diagnosed with autism. She found it challenging to transition over to the bleachers for the large group teaching. One of her preferred activities was colouring. The little girl had a Buddy sit with her while she coloured at a table behind the bleachers where together they were able to build a relationship.
Each week the table was moved a little closer to the bleachers until this little girl was able to sit beside the bleachers—still working on her preferred activities. Eventually she was able to transition to the bleachers with her colouring sheets. The Kids Ministry team prayed each step of the way through this journey.
This may sound like a big job but with bright smiles, both Ms. Heather and Ms. Donna Irving will tell you that “anyone who serves in the Buddy Ministry will be encouraged and blessed!”
Are you interested?
If you are interested in becoming a buddy please contact Ms. Heather at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Buddy Ministry is looking for people who love children and are:
- able to show empathy,
- quick thinkers, and
Our Buddy Ministry team members are not experts—they just have a strong love for children. If you’re interested in serving in this important ministry, they would love to talk with you about joining the team.
Written by Laurel Kenny