Remember those mission stories back when you were a kid in Sabbath School? You sat on the edge of your seat as each thrilling detail of the story unfolded. Would the witch doctor poison the little boy before help arrived? Would the villagers get the missionary doctor’s jeep out of the mud in time? Would the girls find their way through the jungle before the tiger discovered their trail? Would the teacher ever come back and teach them about Jesus? In those days, it seemed as though spreading the gospel to all the world was the most important thing we did as a church. Today, it still is.
Lately there has been a resurgence of interest among adults who remember those days with nostalgia. Of course, mission service and the opportunity to financially support the global work of the church has never gone away, but now parents and teachers want their kids to experience the same excitement about missions that we did.
The Office of Adventist Mission intends to bring back this excitement with a second edition of an interactive program called Mission Week. The new curriculum, based on the theme “Be Part of It,” contains mission-focused devotionals for the classroom for grades 3-8, or for children ages 8-13. It’s been designed so that children can fully participate by leading the programs and taking part in the activities.
The program is similar to a Week of Prayer or a Week of Spiritual Emphasis, only in this case, every devotional program is focused on missions. Complete programs contain video stories, print and PowerPoint stories, mission factoids, activities, and contests. Programs are easily adjustable according to grade or age level, and it is easily adaptable for Sabbath School programs. Primaries and Juniors can even choose their favorite stories and videos to present a mission-themed sermon for the adults. Most pastors and elders would be delighted to involve children in a special church service dedicated to missions.
The Mission Week program begins with a video welcome from Gary Krause, director of Adventist Mission, challenging kids to find opportunities to get involved personally. “I hope you’ll catch a vision of what your mission is,” says Krause, “and help people just the way Jesus did when He was here. You can be part of it!”
nitially, the most attractive feature may be the price. It’s free, one per teacher. Sabbath School teachers, home school teachers, and other interested adults are welcome to use Mission Week in their classroom, children’s church, or other appropriate programs. Simply log onto www.AdventistMission.org and ask for your free copy, or call 1-800-648-5824.
Now kids can experience missions right in their own classroom or church and become a vital part of the mission team. Why not volunteer to join them? After all, we all want to be part of it!
Nancy Kyte is the marketing director for the Office of Adventist Mission. She says the best part of her job is getting people excited about mission. Through the years she has been a leader in the Primary division of her local church, making mission come alive in her Sabbath School through the stories and activities in the Children’s Mission magazine.