Ministry idea notebook

If you are like most leaders involved in ministry, there is a time when you realize it is time to begin a new ministry. Whether it is something short-term or a ministry that is ongoing, everyone needs new ideas! This article presents some ideas that perhaps you haven’t thought of, and is taken from ideas written by Janie Wise, a professional women’s leader in Florida. Read through them, choose several, and customize them for use in your women’s group or church.

  1. Headliner prayer ministry
    Read the newspaper and listen to local news broadcasts. Note events and names that call you to pray – then pause and pray! Many times the news item will express a specific need that you and your group can meet (clothing after a fire; food because adults have lost their jobs; school supplies, etc.)
  2. Adopt a senior citizen
    Every neighborhood has senior residents. Establish a relationship with several and adopt them. Help them in some way at least twice a month. This could mean providing transportation to doctor appointments, going grocery shopping, out to lunch, raking leaves, cleaning out the garage, vacuuming the house, taking food.
  3. Notes of encouragement
    Write notes of encouragement to new parents. Offer to babysit. Provide hot meals for two weeks after the baby’s birth. One church in Oregon provided complete hot meals for a family with a new baby. The meals were complete with main dish, salad and dessert.
  4. Minister to military families
    Find a local source that is designed to provide care packages for military families (especially during holiday seasons). Packages can be distributed locally or sent overseas to men and women on active duty.
  5. Include ministry in your family vacation
    Provide an idea-sheet to the families in your church to encourage them to make missions part of their vacation. Going camping provides an opportunity to have a casual worship service with music and devotions. Stop at a ministry center if traveling through or to metropolitan areas. Take supplies for children’s ministries to North American missionaries.
  6. Provide pure water
    Woman’s Missionary Union sponsors Pure Water, Pure Love, a ministry that provides missionaries and the people whom they serve with clean water filters or purification systems. Go to www.wmu.com/VolunteerConnection for more information.
  7. Cookie bake
    Ask mothers and daughters to bake cookies (either at the church or at home) and come together to plate them. Deliver to police and fire stations in your community with notes of appreciation and encouragement for these public servants.
  8. Christmas in August
    Go to www.wmu.com for information on this annual ministry project that provides items needed by North American missionaries for their ministries. They request items such as school supplies, toiletry items, socks, food snacks. Woman’s Missionary Union provides the lists and information about the missionaries and their ministries in its missions magazines. This is a great project for the entire church. Wrap a large box with Christmas paper to hold the donated items. Box and mail to the addresses provided.
  9. Baby bottles for pregnancy centers
    Purchase new baby bottles, attach a message about the ministry project and distribute the bottles throughout your women’s group or church. Ask participants to fill the bottles with their loose change. Set a date to collect the bottles and deliver to the pregnancy crisis center in your community. Consider having a baby shower and bringing gifts for the center to give away to women as they come to the center for counseling and help.
  10. Provide camp for children in your community
    Many times we forget all a church has to offer the community! Use the Vacation Bible School follow-up event (in VBS materials available through LifeWay Christian Resources) and use it for a children’s camp held at your church. Men who have an interest in sports (played a sport in high school or college qualify!) can teach young boys and girls about sportsmanship and basic skills they might not receive in school or in dysfunctional home settings. Teaching crafts is an easy thing to set up for children on a Saturday morning. Host a mother/daughter tea to teach manners and polite behavior. Have a music camp for children in grades 3-6. Divide children into age groups and enlist women, men and youth to lead the sessions that teach basic music skills and appreciation for music. Connect a craft to the music camp. Do NOT charge for these events! Make them a true ministry to your community.
  11. Free car wash
    Invite the youth of your church to offer a free, “just because we care” car wash. As each car is finished, present the owner with a gospel tract or scripture portion.
  12. Student Christmas post office
    Encourage church members not to mail Christmas cards to one another. Have them bring their cards to church, pay students the postage costs, and students make a “post office” and see that cards are distributed to members. The proceeds are donated to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions.
  13. Seasonal ministry to retirement or convalescent centers
    Make seasonal greeting cards or cards to put on food trays at retirement and/or convalescent centers in your community. Be sure to include a scripture verse on each card. Enlist a small group to help with the deliveries.
  14. Make “Emergency Kits” for hospitals
    Make kits for families waiting in emergency rooms or ICU. In times of emergency little thought is given to taking items that will make a hospital room wait easier. Include moist wipes, travel size bars of soap, toothbrush and toothpaste. Breakfast bars and other mini snacks will help families get through the long hours of waiting. Work with hospital volunteers to keep the kits in stock.
  15. Prayer-walk schools
    Set a time to prayer-walk the perimeters of the schools in your community. Enlist enough pray-ers to cover all the schools in one day. This project could be done the week before school begins in the fall. Pray for students, teachers and administrative workers.

Last Published: December 11, 2009 5:22 PM