Ministry works to change mindset against children in Benin

By June 12, 2008

Benin (MNN) — In Benin,  there's a developing unease about the
widespread neglect of children. Church leaders are battling the misconception
that children are unimportant and that teaching them is time wasted. 

Every Child Ministries' Monica
Miles says they sent a team to help with some training. Leaders of the Redeemed Christian Church of
God gave several examples of neglect, which ECM's Lorella Rouster says is common not only in Benin but in
many of the places ECM teams visit. 

Miles explains, "It is rare for either
parents or churches to give much attention to teaching children. Every Child
Ministries hopes to change that situation by raising the awareness [among] Christians, helping them to understand God's heart for all orphans and other
underprivileged children." 

Last month, the team trained
children's ministry leaders in Cotonou and near Abomey. It was an international team consisting of
trainers from Ghana, Togo, and the United States. Rouster says they're working with believers
to change the mindset.

An uphill battle? Not according to Rouster. Even
a few families and churches really understanding God's heart for children and
for the underprivileged, she says, can make a huge
difference in the nation.

From the beginning of their
training emphasis, Every Child Ministries focused on training African Bible teachers of children and youth
to minister in their local churches and to elp their churches establish growth
through Sunday schools and other ministries.

ECM believes that children are
the most receptive in their community to the Gospel. Therefore, reaching children becomes a key
part of reaching a nation. In response, ECM held a five-day seminar that gives
Christian leaders practical training in approaching outreach to children and
their families. "We want to reach
out to children's workers, children's leaders, to train them to reach
the children on their level so that they can present the Gospel at a level that
the children can understand."

Every Child Ministries envisions
the church reaching out to the children around them so that all may have the opportunity
to say "yes" or "no" to Jesus. Click here if you can help them.


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