[Jesus] sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, "Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all." Then he took a little child and put it among them [in their midst]; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, "Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me."
Mark 9:35-37 NRSV
children and families ministry specialist
Phil is the author of midst.com.au with over 40 years of experience in this area.
This website offers excellent insights & help for parents & churches in their faith journeys with the children in their midst.
There is something for everyone!
If you are:
- a parent doing life and faith with children
- a church going really well and needing a review process to confirm that
- struggling to hold on to children during the transition stages
- wondering about ministry and mission principles
- looking for some parenting or small group ideas around the topic of the discipline of children
… then you will benefit from the kaleidoscope of principles and ideas here.
The name for this website is derived from a story about Jesus where Jesus too a child and placed that child in the middle of the gathering. A child in our midst is meant to make a difference to everything including the way we do life, explore faith and be followers of The Lord, Jesus Christ of Nazareth. If children are excluded or removed, intentionally or unintentionally, we are missing all the benefits that children bring to us.
Phil is a strong advocate for the children in our midst however much of the content found here can be read through the lens of your particular advocacy interest. Just re-read the last sentence: If [advocacy group] are excluded or removed, intentionally or unintentionally, we are missing all the benefits that [they] bring to us.
Be inclusive! Do the hard work! Enjoy the benefits!
Phil is available for presentations, support and encouragement (coffee & a chat), ideas, coaching, training or consultancies … working with you to transform your ministry … helping to get the direction right for you.
The following list of topics give an indication of the breadth of interest and focus of Phil’s ministry.
a kaleidoscope of ministry options
Midst is undergoing a major redevelopment.
The icons & topics below indicate the hope of links to come.
Some of the links below may be active but hopefully there is enough information shown to indicate the scope of the work encompassed and encourage further thought or research.
If you would like to follow anything up with us, feel free to use the link in the menu above to make contact.
with children and families
Looking at practical ways to understand how faith grows and how then to empower parents and workers to find their roles in the discipleship of their children.
Getting the direction and the culture of your team just-right!
When ministries or missions fail it’s sometimes hard to work out why they failed; why they don’t achieve their goals; why they implode; why nothing was learnt from failure. You will either be affirmed in what your doing right or find out why it’s a mess and how to improve things or get it right next time.
Marking and celebrating many of the important moments of life.
Transition & Milestones Ministry will help a faith community work together with parents and a child’s or young person’s wider family to celebrate the important events in a child’s or young person’s life. Discovering how these times can afford effective teaching moments is also an important part of this ministry as is providing resources to help parents nurture faith.
Discovering ‘clown within’ and expressing this in ministry
Regardless of where you are in your journey of discovering of your ‘clown within’, there are some important principles to observe and practice along the way that will help your ministry of sharing the Gospel. These basic principles are also helpful when it comes to drama, storytelling and even in the way you engage the Bible story.
Presentations, training & consultancies
Working with you to help get the direction right for your context …
- ‘Presentations’ for a variety of contexts helps to not only communicate a message but to also demonstrate many of the principles of ministry with children and families.
- ‘Consultancy’ helps you to see if a review is needed. This will identify and affirm that which is effective and helpful as well as show up areas that need adjustment or change.
- ‘Training’ helps leadership, workers &/or parents to gain the fresh insights or motivation to implement more effective faith forming approaches.