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Feb

25

2017

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2017 Group Leader Information is Here!

Group Leader Information is online for 2017!

Click HERE to download a packet specific to your camp location. The CentriKid team has worked hard to apply the insights you have given us and make things easier for you.

We want camp 2017 to be your best summer ever and we hope that our updated Group Leader Information will help equip you with everything you need to make this possible!
You’ll notice a few small changes we’ve made for 2017.

On the cover we have a small sneak-peak to help you find what you need!

  • Location Specifics (information for your particular camp location)
  • Pre-Camp Info (camp schedule, to-do list, parent meeting help, etc.)
  • Forms (all documents you will need in camp preparation)

You’ll notice, we’ve made our Parent Packet a separate document this year, so you can easily download and print off as many as you need for your pre-camp parent meeting. Be sure to download Group Leader Information from your location for yourself and point your parents to our Parent Packet as you prepare for camp!

As the Group Leader for your church/ministry, this document includes everything you will need to effectively prepare and lead a group to CentriKid. Whether it’s your first year at camp or your seventh summer in a row, this document will be your guide as you gear up for Adventure Awaits!

Meg Brown

Meg started working camp in 2013 and joined the office team in 2016. She received her degree in Educational Ministry and Public Relations from Campbellsville University. She has served as a Bible Study leader, Assistant Director, and Camp Director. Meg leads in Track Times and Group Leader Information for camp 2017. In addition to camp, Meg loves playing tennis, reading books, and spending time outdoors.

Feb

20

2017

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Explaining Grace to Kids

Grace is a word that we use a lot. We talk about God’s grace and how thankful we are for it, but are the kids we see every day, every week understanding what grace really means? When I was growing up in church sometimes I would feel like I was just supposed to “know” what church words meant. So let’s make sure that we are teaching our kids that it is ok to ask questions. Asking questions leads to understanding, and understanding helps kids make their faith their own.

So when the question come up about what grace is, how do you answer it? The best way I know how to explain grace is that, grace simply means not getting what you deserve. We offer grace to people in our lives when we choose to respond with a kind word instead of being cruel. When someone is mean to us it is very easy to be be mean back. Even when someone deserves a mean word, that is where grace comes in and gives them kindness. Or maybe you could explain it better when kids do something that is deserving of punishment. When they deserve time-out or deserve to have something taken away but grace is extended.

Grace isn’t a difficult thing to explain, but don’t assume that kids already understand. Hearing a word often, does not mean that there is understanding. And understanding the concept of grace can have eternal significance.

 

Tiffany Francis

Tiffany graduated from Georgetown College with a degree in communication and media studies, and received her Master's Degree from Murray State. She has been with Lifeway Kids since 2010 and joined the camp team in 2014 where she works on Bible Study, the camp store, and many other elements.

Feb

14

2017

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Taking Risks in Leadership

The word “risk” can send shivers up your spine or can invigorate your curiosity. These steps toward “what’s possible” can, at times, feel impossible. Whether it’s a financial investment, a new ministry, or a different model for your team, risks ultimately mean change. In leadership, responsible risk taking looks a lot less like gambling and a lot more like calculated chess moves.

As a leader, you must be willing to guide your people into the unknown. Not on a careless journey, but one with promise to benefit all. Though the path will be new for your footsteps, as the leader, you must be willing to forge the trail. With risk comes both uncertainty and possibility; we must face the risk before us with both hands open wide. As you begin this endeavor, consider the following:

1. Count the cost
Consider the potential benefits and drawbacks of your possibilities. Make a pros/cons list. Sit down for discussion over coffee with people you trust. Consult your mentors and teammates. And most importantly, seek the Lord’s guidance through meditation and prayer.
2. Make your move
Once you’ve decided to move forward on this new road, set your eyes on what lies ahead. Map out a game plan and stay faithful to your calculations. Heed not the words of naysayers and unbelievers. With peace from the Lord, take each stride in confidence.
3. Stay focused
A bare bank account, a tough day, or words of opposition will be discouraging. Resolve to stay resilient. When pursuing the call God has for you, continue to run your race. Face the obstacles as they come and move on to your mountaintop.

Leaders are seldom remembered for simply what they intended to do. Leaders take action. Taking risks will not always mean success, or improvement, or reward. But, without taking that chance, you’ll never know what could have been. Don’t meekly evaluate your choices. Recognize your goal, and take that leap of faith!

Meg Brown

Meg started working camp in 2013 and joined the office team in 2016. She received her degree in Educational Ministry and Public Relations from Campbellsville University. She has served as a Bible Study leader, Assistant Director, and Camp Director. Meg leads in Track Times and Group Leader Information for camp 2017. In addition to camp, Meg loves playing tennis, reading books, and spending time outdoors.

Feb

3

2017

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Friendly Reminder: Deposits are due soon!

If your church is registered for camp 2017, CentriKid deposits are due by February 15, 2017.

This is an important deadline because it helps us with getting supplies together and proper staffing for the summer – and if you’ve ever been on the waiting list before, you know this is a time when groups on the waiting list anticipate getting a call about spots opening up!

This is your chance to reduce your number of spots with no penalty. If you have already registered, you are required to pay a $50 non-refundable deposit per person to hold your reservation. Any new or additional reservations made after February 15 will require an immediate $50 non-refundable deposit per person. ALL lost deposits are non-refundable and cannot be applied toward balance due.

Click here to watch a tutorial video about how to manage your account and pay your deposits online. You can also call 1-877-CAMP-123 to speak with our Camp Registration team. They expect a lot of calls on the 14th and 15th, so you can avoid a longer wait time by calling now!

Registration is still open. For those of you who are interested in CentriKid but haven’t registered yet, you can email us for more information at centrikid@lifeway.com or sign up online. We would love to have you join us at camp and to get you signed up for this year!

We are excited for CentriKid 2017: Adventure Awaits as we study in John 8:12 what it means to follow the One True Light!

Alli Sewell

Alli began working camp in 2012 and joined the office team in 2016. She has served as a Bible Study Leader and Assistant Director. Alli graduated from Carson Newman University with a degree in Nutrition and Dietetics in 2014. She loves all things Disney, Tennessee Vols, and showing everyone pictures of her nieces, Caroline and Waverly.

Jan

25

2017

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Before and After Camp Devos are Available!

The camp season starts in almost 5 months! For some of you, it seems like an eternity. For others, you may have just panicked and checked your to-do list!
However, you can begin to get kids excited about camp even now, using our BEFORE CAMP DEVOTIONS for church groups. When you get home from camp, keep the conversation going about what God did at camp, and what God is continuing to do in the lives of kids and adults! Just use our AFTER CAMP DEVOTIONS for church groups. For the after camp portion, we’ve even included ideas for Prayer Walks you can do together as a group to help kids continue to shine the light of Jesus in dark places!

Simply click on the logo below, and download the PDF.

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We pray that the Lord will use even these before and after meetings to help leave lasting impressions on what it really means to really follow the One True Light!

Alli Sewell

Alli began working camp in 2012 and joined the office team in 2016. She has served as a Bible Study Leader and Assistant Director. Alli graduated from Carson Newman University with a degree in Nutrition and Dietetics in 2014. She loves all things Disney, Tennessee Vols, and showing everyone pictures of her nieces, Caroline and Waverly.

Jan

16

2017

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Pre-Camp Meetings – Use Your 60

On social media, you’ve probably seen us mention #UseYour60 and we wrote a blog about it too.  This is the heart of CentriKid, equipping adults and children’s ministry leaders to make the very most of their week of camp.  We provide detailed Group Leader Information, so download that for your week of camp (its found on your camp location-specific page).

Making every moment count can apply to your pre-camp meetings.  Don’t just use your meetings as informational meetings, use them as an opportunity to invest in the families who are trusting you with their child at camp.

  1. Relieve fears – especially those who are going away for the first time, or those parents who will be sending a camper away from home for the first time.
  2. Answer questions – you can prepare for some of these things, but leave time to answer questions about what the camp experience will be like, housing and roommates, when to pick up and drop off from the church.
  3. Explain safety – let parents know about your plans to monitor kids through the week, whether its a buddy system or having a leader from your group assigned to small groups of kids.
  4. Convey that camp is more than just fun and games – Share the spiritual direction for the week, begin teaching kids (and their parents) the key verse John 8:12.
  5. Set your clocks – Let parents know that worship is 7 to 8 PM, and they can pray for kids during that hour each night of camp… Knowing that they will be hearing from God’s word and hearing about the gospel.
  6. Make a packing list – Have parents send their camper with a Bible and pen. Like last year there will be notes pages for worship inside the camper nametags.  Talk about OMC and encourage them to label everything that goes to camp with the camper’s name.

In the pre-camp meetings with parents, pray for the upcoming camp trip and what God is doing in the lives of these families.

BONUS – Follow-up after the meeting with kids or parents who may have more questions. Your extra investment could go a long ways towards ensuring success for each camper.  Encourage those who have never been away from home before to have a trial run by spending a couple nights away from mom and dad with a friend or a grandparent’s house.

We believe God can work in the lives of kids in a powerful way when they are away at camp and we want every camper to be successful at camp.  Your pre-camp meetings will be a great opportunity to communicate information and your heart for ministry at camp.

Jeremy Echols

JE leads the camp team, finds new camp locations, plans training, and lots of other projects. He loves spending family time with his wife Emily and their daughter Madison.

Innovation in Kids Ministry

If you are a kids ministry leader, you want your kids ministry to be excellent, creative, and most importantly, reaching families for Christ. You also probably want to keep finding new ways to get across Biblical truths in creative and innovative ways to the kids in your ministry. Sometimes, though, it’s a struggle in itself to maintain a level of excellence with the nuts and bolts of your ministry (by studying your curriculum, planning events, and even just recruiting enough volunteers for a Sunday morning). You want to create new, and creative ministry tools and experiences for families, but how in the world are you supposed to find time and energy to dream, brainstorm, and innovate?

Here are some tips to help get you started down the path of innovation: 

  1.  Find your purpose. Everything in your kids ministry should be rooted in your purpose. Like at CentriKid, our purpose is rooted in Scripture–everything you see at camp will flow from God’s Word. Before you innovate, be sure you know what you want to accomplish. Write that purpose down somewhere that you’ll see it daily.
  2. Schedule Time to Innovate. Go ahead. Put some time on your calendar each week to simply sit, think, doodle, and brainstorm big ideas that you want to see happen in your ministry. If it’s not scheduled and routine, other things will overtake it, and you’ll never have time to dream. Simply put 30 minutes to an hour each week on your calendar, grab a cup of coffee, and get to dreaming!
  3. Don’t give up!  You can do it! The nuts and bolts of your kids ministry SHOULD definitely be taken care of and sometimes will take away from the chances you have to innovate. But don’t give up! You can definitely allow your creativity to influence your style of kids ministry leadership, and if you keep trying, God will use you and your innovation to continue to make the gospel clear to kids.

Micheal Walley

Micheal is a CentriKid Camp Specialist and a volunteer in his church's kidmin each week. He has been serving with CentriKid since 2011 and on the office team since 2014. Micheal loves talking about kids ministry, leadership, coffee, and his wife, Anne Marie.

Kids Ministry Resolutions for 2017

It is hard to believe that the holidays are over. This means Christmas decorations must be put away, back to busy schedules, and new years resolutions. Most folks make financial resolutions, health resolutions, and family resolutions for a new year, but why not start your ministry off with a fresh start towards kids ministry resolutions. Here are some ideas that we hope you find helpful to kicking off the new year right!

1.Invest in Volunteers.  As a leader, investing in your volunteers is as important as investing in your kids. This may sound crazy, but it is true. As one person, you can do only so much. A well trained and equipped volunteer multiplies what you can do, and a team of volunteers quadruples your multiplication efforts. To invest in them, start by getting to know your team of volunteers on a personal level. It is easy in the busyness of Sunday morning to take this group for granted. Make it a goal in 2017 to write a personal note to each of them thanking them for serving with you.  This simple step can launch a year of renewed engagement for your ministry team!

2. Meet the Parents. I know this one if challenging! In the craziness of kids getting dropped off and picked up sometimes we are lucky to just say hello and check their security tag. Meaningful communication doesn’t just happen. It is a choice you must be disciplined to make each time to get to interact with parents. This year take a shot at improving your communication with parents. This might be standing outside your classroom (without the clipboard in hand) and intentionally greeting every parent, putting together an email newsletter, or organizing a parent appreciation night just to love on them. The investment is worth it! Parents, like volunteers, have a huge impact on ministry because without their support, there aren’t any kids to minister to.

3. “Use your 60”. At CentriKid we believe in the power of every minute with kids, so we want to use every one of them! We believe that you can intentionally take each minute to deeply invest in a volunteer or a kid’s life. Think about what you can do if you take those “random” minutes to stop a leader in the hallway and call out something amazing you saw them do with a child in class last week. Think about what you can do if you take those last couple of minutes of the hour on Sunday to stop a parent on their way out the door and tell them how you saw the light bulb go off in their child’s mind today during worship. Think about what you can do if you take the first minute of each class to hug a child and tell them how thankful you are that they are here today. Think about what you can do if you take the “commute” minutes on the way to church each week to thank God for the ministry to get to serve in and the people he has placed around you to help change lives!

We are praying for you and believe in what you are doing! Let’s begin 2017 with a grateful heart knowing that each day we are impacting little lives for eternal purposes!  Take a moment now and jot down your 2017 Kids Ministry Resolutions!

Jeremy Echols

JE leads the camp team, finds new camp locations, plans training, and lots of other projects. He loves spending family time with his wife Emily and their daughter Madison.

Dec

25

2016

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Merry Christmas from CentriKid!

 

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Whether you are opening presents by the fire, traveling to Granny’s house to gather with extended family, or enjoying other fun Christmas traditions, we hope that you and your family have a blessed day as you celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ!

For a child will be born for us, a son will be given to us, and the government will be on His shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6 (HCSB)

And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 1 John 5:11 (HCSB)

From our CentriKid family to you, Merry Christmas!

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Micheal Walley

Micheal is a CentriKid Camp Specialist and a volunteer in his church's kidmin each week. He has been serving with CentriKid since 2011 and on the office team since 2014. Micheal loves talking about kids ministry, leadership, coffee, and his wife, Anne Marie.

Dec

22

2016

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The Light of Christmas

One of my favorite parts of Christmas are the beautiful lights. I love to see the twinkle of Christmas lights throughout the town. When I was younger my grandfather and I would drive around our small Kentucky town and marvel at the beautiful lights that were on display at Christmastime. This week as we celebrate the birth of Christ, the Light of the world, let’s remember the true meaning of the light.

On the night that baby Jesus was born and laid in the manger He brought light into the world. God is light, and when He sent His son, Jesus to earth, God provided a way for us to be reconciled with Him so that we would never have to walk in darkness again. Jesus broke through the darkness of the world when he defeated death on the cross.

In the darkness of night the first Christmas, Jesus came to shine a light into the world. And Jesus is still shining bright into the dark world. The Lord placed a light in the sky to guide the wise men to their Savior. And Jesus is still shining light into our darkness today. The light of Christ is shining still this Christmas.

This summer at CentriKid we will be discussing Jesus, the one true light, and digging into John 8:12, Then Jesus spoke to them again: “I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life.” We are called to walk in the light, and receive the life that the light brings. 

This is why I love the lights at Christmas, it reminds me of Jesus. It reminds me that no matter how dark it seems, Jesus can shine light into my circumstances and rescue me from myself.  This Christmas when you see all of the twinkle lights let that be a reminder of the light of the world, and how we have a responsibility as believers to walk in the light.

Tiffany Francis

Tiffany graduated from Georgetown College with a degree in communication and media studies, and received her Master's Degree from Murray State. She has been with Lifeway Kids since 2010 and joined the camp team in 2014 where she works on Bible Study, the camp store, and many other elements.