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Jesus modeled the importance of children and insisted he had time for them. Some mission workers are in assignments that focus on children, while other assignments include work with children as one part of what they do. Roles can include teaching or health and community development. Worker time and funds are also committed to curriculum development and teacher training, especially for Sunday schools and vacation Bible schools. Retreats for children and youth are important times of spiritual growth.
"Jesus called for them and said, 'Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.'" - Luke 18:16
Children around the world have many needs and deserve attention, knowledge of God's love for them, and a personal relationship with God. One worker noted that she was investing a lot of time in youth from difficult backgrounds. While she loved them, she felt called to focus more on children. "Why should we wait until people get into drinking or drugs or some other problems until we start teaching them the good news?" When we follow Jesus' example, we realize that children have a lot to teach us as well as being eager learners.
In some cases, international churches have started Christian schools, though it is more common that church-based children's ministries focus on Sunday school and other less formal programs. Some churches provide food for malnourished children and/or sponsor activity programs, community libraries and retreats. Mission workers in various regions of the world have filled significant roles in working alongside local teachers to adapt, translate or develop children's curricula.