Children’s work has long been an important facet of BIEM’s church-planting strategy in Eastern Europe. In fact, numerous new churches actually originated as outreaches to neighborhood children. Following are various efforts involving outreach to children.
These are neighborhood children’s outreaches established by national church planters and workers who have targeted an area for a new church. In some cases BIEM personnel have been able to conduct such efforts in local schools. Other times a facility is rented, or a family volunteers their home. In some cases these meetings are held in neighborhood parks.
As the children’s ministry develops, national church planters and workers organize special events to which they invite parents. These events are opportunities to develop friendship with parents as the Gospel is shared with them. Often, this leads to the parents' being saved and attending the church. Eventually these children’s clubs lead to establishing a Sunday school.
Summer camps are a very big deal for children overseas. Many times, good attendance in the children’s club or Sunday school leads to an opportunity for going to camp. Every summer BIEM missionaries and workers conduct summer camps in over 20 different locations involving many hundreds of children. Hundreds are saved, and many others make life-changing decisions in BIEM-sponsored summer camps.
While in the United States there are many organizations that care for needy children, this is not the case in most of the countries where BIEM engages in church-planting. For this reason, many churches overseas often come into direct contact with needy children right in their neighborhoods. In other cases, orphanages appeal for assistance since they are severely underfunded and Christians have a reputation for caring for needy children. That situation provides these churches with opportunities to meet physical and spiritual needs of needy children as they conduct regular ministries in their areas. At BIEM we are grateful for those who partner with us in assisting these churches in providing compassion and sharing the Gospel. These outreaches are a great testimony for Christ among area residents and officials. We have seen local officials moved by such demonstrations of compassion and have seen government orphanage workers come to Christ.
How can I help?
There are several ways you can be involved in BIEM’s children’s ministry.
- You can help by donating to these outreaches by either regular support or a one-time gift.
- You can help by sending us items used in our needy children’s ministry that we ship overseas in containers.
- You can participate in Kids Care Cartons, which provide gift boxes distributed to needy children on special days.
- You can sponsor a child or youth for summer camp.
- You can pray for the children and the ongoing efforts of our national missionaries to show them the love of Christ.