In Perspectives on Family Ministry, Timothy Paul Jones makes the case that every church is called to some form of family ministry—but what he means by “family ministry” isn’t simply one more program to add to an already-packed schedule! According to Jones, the most effective family ministries involve refocusing every church process to engage parents in the process of discipling their children and to draw family members together instead of pulling them apart.
Jones sets the stage with introductory chapters on the historical contexts and foundations of family ministry. Then, three effective practitioners show clearly how your church can make the transition to family ministry. Paul Renfro (pastor of discipleship at Grace Family Baptist Church in Spring, Texas) writes in favor of Family-Integrated Ministry, where the emphasis is on intergenerational discipleship. Brandon Shields (minister to high school students at Highview Baptist Church, a multi-site megachurch in Kentucky and Indiana) supports Family-Based Ministry—ministry that organizes programs according to ages and interests but also develops intentional activities and training events to bring families together. Jay Strother (minister to emerging generations at Brentwood Baptist Church in Tennessee) prefers Family-Equipping Ministry, maintaining age-organized ministry while reorganizing the congregation to call parents to become active partners in the discipleship of their children.
“After devoting nearly 35 years of my life championing the cause of the family, I enthusiastically applaud the current movement of equipping church pastors in family ministry based upon the tenets of scripture. Dr. Jones, through this work, has provided an important teaching tool that will serve the pastorate well.”—Dennis Rainey, President, FamilyLife