With funding on the decline, are children’s homes still a core church ministry?

FUNDING ON THE DECLINE — Children’s homes: Still a core church ministry? (reporting from Duncan, S.C.). Page 1 lead.

DUNCAN, S.C. – Southeastern Children’s Home cares for neglected and abused children on a 50-acre campus overlooking the Smoky Mountains.

Boys row out in a boat to catch bass and bream in a spring-fed pond. A beekeeper teaches girls how to cultivate honey.

The home’s residents ride horses as part of therapy and enjoy swing sets, basketball goals and a volleyball court.

As the Christian child-care agency meets physical needs, it fulfills a more important mission: sharing Jesus with children and families, executive director Robert Kimberly said.

“We’ve had eight of our kids become Christians this year, and so it’s been wonderful,” Kimberly said.

Yet he and many colleagues across the nation question if Churches of Christ are as passionate about caring for children in need as they once were.

In a survey of 20 children’s homes in more than a dozen states, The Christian Chronicle found widespread concern about declining church support amid trying economic times and shifting ministry priorities.

Church planted in hotel ballroom touts ‘New Life’ (reporting from Bridgeton, Mo.). Second Front.

Preach it, brother, but it keep it short (reporting from Terrell, Texas). Inside Story.

2011: Numbers that inspired us. Editorial.

Remembering 2011: The year in quotes. Views.

This post highlights my stories in the January 2012 print edition of The Christian Chronicle.

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