By Joy Allmond
NASHVILLE, TENN. — Some churches across the U.S. and around the world are canceling near-future worship services and ministry activities as precautionary measures against COVID-19, but a temporary halt in church gatherings doesn’t have to interrupt small group discipleship for families.
LifeWay Christian Resources is offering “LifeWay Kids at Home,” a free temporary digital resource to supplement Sunday School from home.
LifeWay Kids Director of Operations Chuck Peters said they decided to respond to church leaders who were asking how other churches are keeping families engaged in discipleship in the event of church gathering cancellations.
“We quickly became aware there is a broader need of churches we don’t currently serve,” said Peters. “This short-term temporary study is an opportunity for us to serve the church by serving families.”
Initially, he said, LifeWay Kids’ approach was to take care of the churches they already serve through its three brands of kids’ curriculum—”Bible Studies for Life,” “Explore the Bible” and “The Gospel Project.”
But almost instantly, Peters said, LifeWay Kids’ vision grew.
“We decided to open it up to everyone,” he said. “This is a chance for LifeWay Kids to pour into the global Kingdom; we’re making this free to anyone who wants to use it. It’s an opportunity to serve the Church with no strings attached.”
Users will access the experience through LifeWay’s Digital Pass platform following these steps:
- Step 1: Go to digitalpass.lifeway.com.
- Step 2: Login or create an account (free).
- Step 3: Click the LifeWay Kids (or Preschool) at Home icon on the main page of Digital Pass.
- Step 4: In the LifeWay Kids at Home interface, download activity pages and conversation guides (button at top right).
Users will have access to video content from “Bible Studies for Life for Kids” worship hour, Bible story teachings, life application, and kids talking about the week’s topic. To accommodate families that have children of different ages, the “LifeWay Kids at Home” content is not graded and is geared toward first through sixth graders.
Each week’s lesson will be available to registrants on Thursdays at midnight. Parents and caregivers can access the content directly at home from any device.
“An added benefit for churches that use ‘Bible Studies for Life for Kids’ is that ‘LifeWay Kids at Home’ will keep the lessons on schedule,” said Peters. “Once they resume normal church activities they will be where they would have been without the coronavirus interruption.”
There’s also an option for “The Gospel Project for Kids” users, Peters added.
Permission is granted for churches to post non-music videos and activity pages for their use only on a secure and/or closed site.
Participating churches are asked to limit posting each session’s content to one week at a time and remove the content prior to posting the next week’s content. This permission is granted beginning March 12 and expiring May 31, unless specified otherwise.
“This is our heartbeat—to serve the church and equip parents to minister to their kids,” said Peters.
“The coronavirus presents many challenges, but every obstacle is an opportunity. We have the privilege of aiding parents and caregivers—people who may have never done so—to conduct a Bible study in their home. We get to help facilitate that at no cost, no obligation and no strings attached for these churches and families. It’s why we’re here: We’re a ministry first.”
Joy Allmond is a writer for LifeWay Christian Resources.