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RA's/ GA's or AWANA's

Discussion in 'Youth Forum' started by dianetavegia, Feb 9, 2003.

  1. Sularis

    Sularis Member

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    The ideal AWANA is not to be a missionally focussed program - it is because it is ideally a missions and discipling program - True I cant quote the books and books I went through - but now and then Ill hear someone say something and words will pop into my head - words I learned at AWANA

    I know there is at least one missions unit in every book from Pals up - since for my Pals missions unit - I had to assemble a booklet on what missions is - pick a missionary - and write what that missionary life story

    And sure JV council time doesnt give you much time for missions - the JV time that was run at my church always had a second part - where we had mini-competitions seperate from AWANA game time

    I tell you folks that a well run AWANA program that adheres to its rules will be a blessing that will raise up children in the church familiar with the Bible and basic doctrine.
     
  2. Sherrie

    Sherrie New Member

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    I hold to what I say. It is a money hungry club. It cost 14.00 per year at our church per person.

    My shirt was 12.50....My sons was 19.95..Amanda has to buy different junk.

    Thats 32.00 just to go to it. Then theres the books. plus any thing else.

    Just dues and shirts was 64.00.

    Hey and the kicker is people do not have to come. It is not required like regular school. If you want people to come to the Lord...even small children...this is not the way. Most are coming...have checked with other churches...because their parents or grandparents are coming.

    I am telling my Pastor to look for another 7&8th grade leader...as I do not agree with it.

    Sherrie
     
  3. WW2'er

    WW2'er New Member

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    Sherrie,

    I'm sorry you feel that way. It is probably best then that you do leave the program.

    While I can sympathize with the initial "sticker shock", it should cost you less in future years because you won't have to buy a new uniform every year. There are also different uniform options to keep costs low. Broken down over the cost of 32 weeks, I believe the cost per child is not out of line. Also, many churches see Awana as a ministry and pay for a percentage, if not all, of the costs for visiting children as an outreach. It's a great spiritual investment if that child accepts Christ as savior and possibly their parents too!

    I can tell you assuredly that Awana is not a "money hungry" organization. Their hope is that all children and youth throughout the world will come to know, love and serve the Lord Jesus Christ. To make that a reality takes funds. I firmly believe the investment is worth the price because I have witnessed the abundant results of the program. Awana is also accredited by the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability(ECFA), so they don't waste funds or make promises to donors that they can't live up to, and are audited yearly to assure compliance with ECFA standards.

    There is always a difficult balance to try to maintain between business and ministry. It really does take both to accomplish what you hope for, but if any either side gets too strong, the ministry will fail or simply stop. I'm sorry you feel it is currently unbalanced and wish you the best in future ministry endeavors.

    God Bless!
    WW2'er
     
  4. Sherrie

    Sherrie New Member

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    My church has picked up no fees. And this program leaves no room for a poorer kid and there is absolutely no outreach in ministry. It serves no purpose.

    But thank you

    Sherrie
     
  5. 10usNE1

    10usNE1 New Member

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    I cannot speak for the AWANA program. I know very little about it.

    I can without reservation recommend the GA program. This program taught me the Baptist doctrine, living a Godly Christian life and how to minister to others. This program has proved invaluable to me. Invaluable to me as an indivdual and invaluable to me as a pastor's wife.

    Cindy
     
  6. newgirl

    newgirl New Member

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    I can't believe some of your post. I thought as christians we are suppose to encourage people to learn about the Bible. This is my first year in the Awana program. Sure it's not perfect, but is anyone or anything ever perfect? Yes, the answer is that our Heavenly Father is perfect. And I wish you would all take a minute to pray and ask him to have his will in your programs. I was in a church several years ago that did Mission Friends, GA's & RA's. And by no means was it perfect. The boys played basketball the entire time and the girls usually went somewhere each week on a field trip and the Misson Friends learned alot about coloring. I'm not trying to bash either group. As someone else mentioned, if your heart is not right and your not in God's will you should get out, because your probably doing more harm for the kids by having a bad spirit in the group. You've mentioned the deal about money, why not just pray and God will supply the money and the needs. Why not save the money you spend by eating out a couple of times each week and help with which program your church is involved in, by adopting a family that needs extra money for their supplies. Unless you guys now something that I don't ---everything cost money-----church activites, school activites, and family activites. Why is the money issue such a big deal.I work 40 hours a week like most Americans. Sure I wish I was rich, but the Lord will supply my needs if I just ask. Please ask the Lords guidance in your decisions, but don't forget that the kids are the ones that are losing out if we don't teach them the Bible.
     
  7. Jeremiah

    Jeremiah Member

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    Hey new girl .. I agree! It shouldn't be a matter of the pocket book, it should be a matter of heart. No matter what the "program" ...

    Our church GA and RA programs are failing not because of a lack of willing leadership, but because of a lack of kids. Our Children's department fluctulates from 25 to 3 from week to week. I would blame it on the parents for not bringing their kids to church on Wednesday evening, or not even comming at all. However, since we have little or no outreach it is a wonder we have any children coming!

    Bottom line, where is the heart? We have a program but the members are not 100% in it. Lots of leadership willing to teach but no one willing to go door to door.

    Now our youth Discipleship Training on the other hand is flourishing partly because the kids who come are comming to learn AND the leaders are committed to the success of the program, investing their heart. Many of our older kids come on their own since the parents don't come to Church in the eveninigs. The leadership visits each child through the month even kids who have never come. Heart.

    After watching the Veggie Tales Jonah movie I understand a little better :) Sure we have leaders that are willing to lead/tell the message (some still having to go through the whale), but their heart is not in it. Well our church isn't waiting for the vine to shrivel up and die! We are expanding the visitation ministry for the entire church.

    We don't need a new program! No matter what the ministry, without the proper heart it is a struggle to be blessed.

    -- Jeremiah
     
  8. newgirl

    newgirl New Member

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    Jeremiah
    Glad to hear from you. I know how it feels to only have a few kids in your church, but keep up the work. And your kids will increase. I feel so strong about letting kids know that we LOVE THEM. So many kids don't know or haven't experienced the love and kindness from adults. I had an experience at the last church we were at. We only had a few kids in the church, so they started a bus ministry. Well, the kids that came in had not been in a church setting before. They didn't know how to act in church and at church functions. We picked up about 8 children at one location, the youngest child was still in diapers and brought a diaper bag with her. It was so sad, because we knew the adults were using the church as a baby sitter and just to get rid of the kids. But after about 2 years, it would amaze you how much these kids learned. They learned to come in church, be quiet and sit down. We had to continue working with them when we had a meal at church. They were bad about grabbing food with their hands, so we assigned each youth a small child. They helped them fix their plate and get a drink. But anyway.......
    I think we only had 6 or 8 kids in the beginning and ended up with about 30 in 2 years time. We had one guy that ran the bus ministry, he was very dedicated to the responsibility of picking these kids up for all the church functions. We also, had some youth that came to church to escape their home life. They were good kids, but needed someone to care about them. Since we left the church, the kids have all left but about 2 kids and 1 or 2 youth. The new pastor didn't like the bus ministry and didn't show any compassion or understanding to these kids from troubled homes. So the bus ministry stopped and the kids quit coming. We are at a church that has some great kids and youth. You can see such a difference in these kids, they are spiritual. Jerimiah, I truly hope you can keep these kids in church and I really do hope that you can get even more kids in church. How can we teach kids about missions, or how to learn Bible verses, unless we set good examples for them. Oh well----keep up the good work and I'll say a special prayer for you.------------New Girl
     
  9. newgirl

    newgirl New Member

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    Jeremiah---
    I liked the Jonah movie also. We took the kids from church and had a great time together. And I was amazed how many other people where in the theater. It was a great feeling to be in the movies with other christians!
    New Girl
     
  10. WW2'er

    WW2'er New Member

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    NewGirl,

    I like your spirit and attitude! [​IMG] Thanks for posting and keep up the good work. To God be the glory!

    God Bless! [​IMG]
    WW2'er
     
  11. Margie Kritzer

    Margie Kritzer <img src =/Margie.gif>

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    Our GA's and RA's are dues-free. My girl just loves GA's, and it's the first girl group with which she was willing to identify. They learn a great deal about missions, and they learn domestic skills (cooking, etc..) and celebrate being girls.

    It has done wonders for her gender identity. She had real issues about being a girl only two years ago, I think because she had seen how unhappy I was several years ago. I am grateful to the generous ladies who donate their time.
     
  12. Hardsheller

    Hardsheller Active Member
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    I would encourage any of you to call the pastor of Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church of Hartsburg, MO. It is a country church that uses the Awana ministry as an outreach tool to the community.

    There is no cost to the children.
    The emphasis is on reaching kids for Christ.
    Several families have been won through this ministry.

    On Wednesdays this small church will have it's multipurpose building (a Metal Building) overflowing with children.

    Awana ministry reaches people for Jesus Christ if done as a ministry. :D
     
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