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Family and Age Level Ministries

The Committee on Families and Children
Ecumenical Young Adult Ministries Team
Ecumenical Youth Ministries Staff Team

The Committee on Families and Children

was formed through the merger of the Committee on Family Ministries and Human Sexuality and the Committee on Justice for Children and their Families.

The Mission of the Committee on Families and  Children is to strengthen ministries with and for families and children by:

● developing resources;
● translating research;
● advocating for justice;
● empowering leaders;
● promoting healthy relationships;
● exploring theological implications and
● lifting up practical applications.

Work and Ministry Priorities:

The committee works on its priorities on a Quadrennial rotation. The following are the committee’s four foci:

● Faith Formation
● Justice
● Healthy Relationships
● Children

The Committee on Families and Children continues the work of the Committee on Family Ministries and Human Sexuality, which had its roots in an ecumenical staff fellowship of denominational family ministry specialists that began meeting in the 1950s.

The Committee's charge is to develop program activities, strategies, and policies.  The committee also functions as a forum, enabling member denominations and organizations to share resources and work cooperatively.

The Committee assists participating denominations and organizations in:

  • the life-long nurturing task of families
  • strengthening marriage, parenting and familial living through programs of education and leader development
  • addressing human sexuality throughout the life cycle
  • supporting families in a time of many cultural changes
  • providing remedial strategies for problems affecting families, preventative strategies for enhancing the health of families, and advocacy regarding public policies that impact families.

The committee includes a network of some thirty-four denominations and family serving organizations. It meets annually, sponsors an occasional newsletter and its members contribute to the Journal of Family Ministry.

Click here for the committee's 2006 annual report.

Family 2006 Resource: Family Values: A Tapestry of Choices
Family 2005 Resource: Valuing Families
Family 2004 Resource: Peacemaking Begins at Home
Family 2003 Resource: Transformed, Centered and Balanced: Never Enough Time
Family 2002 Resource: Jubilee People Centered and Balanced - Making Ends Meet

The Committee on Families and Children continues the work of the Committee on Justice for Children and their Families began as the child advocacy arm of the NCC Division of Church and Society in 1978. In 1994 it moved to Ministries in Christian Education (now known as the Education and Leadership Ministries Commission).  A primary function of the committee is to facilitate member denominations and organizations working together to strengthen the well-being of children and families.  In addition to raising awareness of the critical needs of children and families and ways to respond to these needs, the committee is concerned with the faith community's being better equipped to prepare people for advocacy on behalf of children and families.

In a world where millions of children suffer needlessly, the religious community must be a prophetic voice which calls for God's shalom of peace, justice and wholeness for all children and families. The Committee on Justice for Children and their Families coordinates and strengthens the religious community's efforts to inform and empower churches and religious organizations to respond to children's needs, especially those of vulnerable and impoverished children.

The committee's network of advocates embraces some 30 persons. Sixteen full members represent seven NCC member communions and four cooperating organizations. In addition, there are eight associates representing six additional communions or cooperating organizations.

Priorities for the New Millennium

  • raise the church's awareness of and response to children's needs
  • strengthen congregations' inclusion of children in the full life and ministry of the church
  • encourage and support high quality congregation-based child care
  • strengthen the church's work in preventing violence
  • monitor the impact of welfare-to-work legislation on children and families
  • promote high quality comprehensive public education

The committee has published three bibliographies:

  • Child Abuse Ministry: Resources for the Religious Community for the Prevention, Intervention and Healing of Child Abuse
  • Child Health and Family Health Ministry
  • Violence: The Church's Response

After the upsurge of church burnings in 1996, the committee focused its attention on anti-racism resources, especially on curricula and activity for children and the church.

Click here for "The Church and Children: Visions and Goals for the 21st Century" - policy adopted by the NCC/CWS General Assembly in November 2004.

Click here for the committee's 2006 annual report.

July 8, 2006, A Faithful Voice for Children

Ecumenical Young Adult Ministries Team

A Young Adult Ministry Staff Team existed from the 1970s until 1992 and was responsible for a series of conferences, several with the name "Crossroads." Following the May 1992 Taize Gathering in Dayton, OH, a Young Adult Steering Committee was formed of young adults representing the communions which made up the Young Adult Ministry Staff Team. In November of 1992, the two groups met together and merged into the Ecumenical Young Adult Ministries Team, which includes both young adult constituents and denominational staff serving in young adult ministries. One staff person and one young adult are elected to co-moderate the team for a two-year term.

In 1993 the Team adopted the following mission statement: The Ecumenical Young Adult Ministries Team of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA is an ecumenical coalition of communities that connect, empower, and strengthen young adult ministries and denominational and young adult organizational representatives. We struggle for diverse and inclusive networks through local, regional, national and international partnerships. We seek to live out our faith and create a more just world by upholding the dignity and importance of all God’s creation.

The EYAMT in 2006 sponsored its fifth "Come to the Feast" event, an ecumenical event for leaders and young adults. 

For information on "Come to the Feast, go to www.cometothefeast.org

Click here for the Ecumenical Young Adult Ministries Team's 2006 annual report.

Contact: Garland F. Pierce


Ecumenical Youth Ministries Staff Team

The Ecumenical Youth Ministries Staff Team (EYMST) gathers each December for a time of continuing education, resource sharing and collaboration and networking, a time apart to renew their spirit and energy for working with youth throughout the year in retreats, mission trips, and youth gatherings.  The primary purpose of EYMST is to resource denominational staff in youth ministry.

Click here for the Ecumenical Youth Ministries Staff Team's 2006 annual report.

Learn more about a first time leadership development conference and retreat for adult workers in youth ministry and their families.


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