As you probably know, a big part of AiG’s outreach is directed at sharing biblical truths with children and teens. This includes a variety of curricula (including a very popular Vacation Bible School program), videos for young people, several exhibits in our Creation Museum for children to enjoy (plus our petting zoo), and so much more.
Research for our book Already Gone indicated that many of the young adults surveyed nationwide, who grew up in the church but no longer attend, started to have doubts about the authority of God’s Word and the Christian faith in elementary school and junior high—well before high school and college.
So it was great to fellowship with the top leaders of Child Evangelism Fellowship recently, an international ministry (with work in almost 200 countries), with its US office outside of St. Louis, Missouri. Its international president Reese Kauffman and the head of the US outreach Moises Esteves spent the entire day with us at the Creation Museum, plus took a quick trip to the Ark Encounter construction site.
No doubt there is a CEF “Good News Club” meeting in a local elementary school in your area. These are outreaches primarily to children 5–11 who attend public schools, and Good News Clubs are legally allowed to meet in these schools after the school day is over. Then through the summer when school is not in session in America and other countries, CEF also sponsors what are called Five Day Clubs, an outreach to elementary school-age children.
You would be hard pressed to find a ministry that’s more evangelistic in reaching children worldwide than CEF.
One of our staff members is reading a history of CEF in a book by Pastor Robert Morgan called Every Child, Every Nation, Every Day, and one of the chapters is devoted to Mr. Kauffman. He has been the volunteer CEO for several years after a successful business career. The book has some interesting insights on the continuity of the ministry. You see, CEF has been around since the 1930s, and has seen leaders come and go. Now that AiG is over 20 years old, our board and leadership have been discussing how to ensure we maintain our ongoing ministry’s focus, mission, and servant leadership for the future generations.
The book, in a chapter about Mr. Kauffman, states,
In studying the history of Christian organizations, Reese noticed a disturbing pattern. Many of them began on a solid theological foundation, with a clear mission and a courageous task. But over time and with successive changes of leadership, many of them drifted away until they no longer resembled the work envisioned by their founders. We can see this in the Ivy League schools and in many denominations and churches. Through a slow process of deterioration, compromise, and change, these organizations accepted leaders with different views. The boards and board members adopted new standards and convictions, and there was a liberalizing of the nature of the organization’s work.
Please pray that AiG, over the future decades, will never follow the pattern we have seen with so many ministries (and Bible colleges) that have strayed from their foundations, and that AiG will stay true to its mission. We praise the Lord that many people have commented to us that the same strong stand on God’s Word they saw AiG taking over 20 years ago when we started has not in any way diminished—but has even become stronger—and we are bolder than ever in standing unashamedly and uncompromisingly on the authority of the Word of God from the very first verse.
Find out more about Child Evangelism Fellowship at CEFOnline.com.
Here is a photo of me with Reese and Moises of CEF, and Mark Looy of our staff (far left).
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,