Mission Friends

For Preschool Leaders

Why begin missions education in the preschool years? Because the significance of a strong foundation based on biblical truths cannot be overestimated. It's important to learn about God and His love for all people at a young age. Preschoolers can understand they are part of God's plan for the world and they can give of their time and abilities to serve Him through caring and sharing. Cultivating a heart for missions in preschoolers brings great value to preschoolers, families, and the entire church.

For Mission Friends leaders, you'll find resources designed to help you engage preschoolers of all ages in hands-on missions discipleship activities.

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What to Do for a Fifth Session of Mission Friends

First Steps 23

Sometimes you just need more to do with Mission Friends. Perhaps you meet on Sunday, the month has a fifth session, but Mission Friends Leader has only 4 sessions, based on Wednesday meetings.

Finding Your Rest

Study Scripture

Leading preschoolers to understand more of God is a daunting task. It can be fun! But it can also be exhausting. Where do they get all that energy from? It can be challenging to say the least.

When Trauma Is Ongoing

Helping preschoolers

When we think of preschoolers who experience trauma, we might think of a child who has gone through a tornado or house fire, a car accident, or witnessed a violent event. These are all one-time events, even though the consequences of these events might last a long time. What about preschoolers who deal with trauma on a regular basis? I’m thinking of a preschooler who is dealing with a serious chronic health condition or has a family member with a continuing health condition. Some preschoolers live with the ongoing trauma of living with a parent who has an addiction or substance abuse disorder. Other examples are preschoolers who live with a parent or sibling who has mental illness or those who live in a household in which there is domestic violence and emotional abuse. These preschoolers live in a constant state of fear because their trauma is ongoing.

A GA Leader Goes to Burkina Faso

“You are going where?” I heard that question again and again as I told my friends of my next exciting missions adventure with God — going to Burkina Faso to help begin missions education for children. Preparation for this trip recalled one of my earliest mission studies as a new GA leader — missions in Upper Volta. I remembered my group of GAs making paper replica maps of the butterfly-shaped country and learning to spell and pronounce the name of the capital.

“Can you say Ouagadougou?” French is the official language of Burkina Faso, although this country’s heritage is primarily Mossi with the Mooré language widely spoken. With a low literacy rate for those over age 15, the challenges before me were for much more than the pronunciation of Ouagadougou [oh-WAH-gah-DOO-goo]. How would I help women understand the need for missions education and discipleship and equip them to begin?

Meet Our Writer, Becky Rainey

Becky Rainey

Let me introduce myself! I am Becky Rainey. My husband, Charles, and I celebrated our 40 anniversary on December 16, 2017. God blessed us with 3 children who love the Lord. Lee and Anna, our grandchildren, are just the icing on top of a wonderful family.

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Serving Him by Teaching and Encouraging

While taking a philosophy class in college, Bart Gibbs was assigned a book titled, Man’s Search for Meaning. After reading the book, he was drawn to continue seeking God’s leading to find true meaning in life. Through volunteer experiences, while visiting Burkina Faso in 1981, he “found meaning in life through serving the Lord in bringing the good news of the Kingdom of God to people in West Africa,” shares Bart. Bart and Jane Anne Gibbs met while in college at the University of Tennessee (Knoxville), at Calvary Baptist Church, and were married in 1983. They have 2 daughters and a son.

Building with Blocks

Amazon Pool

Do you ever notice when your group of Mission Friends tend to gravitate towards certain activities? My group this year seem to be drawn to the Blocks area. Every week, that is the first interest area that they go to. It is not just our boys who gravitate towards activities in Blocks. Some of the girls are in the Blocks area each week, also. Our preschoolers, who are 3s and 4s, spend a lot of time building really elaborate structures. A couple of our preschoolers concentrate so much on what they build, that sometimes the Blocks area is the only interest area in which they play in 1 session of Mission Friends. I have to make sure they learn about missions in this interest area.

Start Something New

Vacation Bible School

One of the most exciting weeks of the church year is Vacation Bible School (VBS). It is a concentrated time of Bible learning, crafts, games, music, and, of course, snacks. VBS is also an avenue of outreach for the church as preschoolers and children from the community participate. You can make missions part of the excitement of VBS.

You’re Invited

Invitation sample

Here’s a way to extend a special invitation to families so they know that they can involve their preschoolers in Mission Friends this summer!

Print the invitation page, fill in the information for your church, and make copies. Use the invitations in the following ways:

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