EST: Colorado Springs, CO – October 4-5, 2019

PCA Children’s Ministry Conferences

He established a testimony in Jacob and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers to teach to their children, that the next generation might know them, the children yet unborn, and arise and tell them to their children, so that they should set their hope in God…” — Psalm 78:5-7

VILLAGE SEVEN PRESBYTERIAN • Colorado Springs, CO • October 4-5, 2019

What makes ministering to children different in the western United States?

It can be lonely. The fierce and independent spirit that helps us survive the winter, can also make building deep community harder and it’s easy to feel isolated. But we are not alone! We are a vital part of a covenant community, and CDM’s Established Conference wants to draw us together with those in our region, and beyond, who are working to establish the faith in this next generation.
We want to invite you to CDM’s Established Conference Colorado, to encourage and equip you to minister to the smallest in your congregation. Let’s celebrate our covenant community and the promises of God that unite us. Let’s escape the grind and find encouragement from those who can share from years of ministering to children. Let’s share resources, emails, and build a community in the west that continues to encourage each other into eternity! Will you join us?

At this conference, you will have the opportunity to attend interactive workshops on:

  • Recruiting, Training And Retaining Your Volunteers
  • Beginning or Revitalizing Your Children’s Ministry
  • Child Safety Policy Development
  • Special Needs Training To Fit Your Church’s Needs
  • Classroom Management
  • Reaching Out To Your Community’s Children
  • Gospel-Centered Parenting
    …and much more

Who should attend an ESTABLISHED conference?

  • Children’s Bible Teachers, Sunday School Teachers, and Classroom helpers
  • Children’s Ministry Directors and Staff
  • Church planters and Church Leadership
  • Parents
  • Youth Helpers
  • Nursery Coordinators
  • …and anyone willing to be more involved in “telling the next generation!”

Special Training from:

  • Stephen Estock, CDM Coordinator
  • Sue Jakes, CDM Children’s Ministry Coordinator
  • Ashley Belknap, Engaging Disability with the Gospel
  • B.A. Snider, Marketing Director/Great Commission Publications
  • CDM’s Children’s Ministry Team

You’ll also have an opportunity to check out the latest resources for Parents and Children!

Pre-Conference Training and Individual Appointments on Friday Afternoon:

CM 101 Children’s Ministry Training – Friday 3-6 pm. – This 3-hour workshop is designed to review the entire CM101 resource book with an emphasis on how to start, develop and maintain a vibrant children’s ministry. Everything from parental support, recruiting and keeping volunteers to teacher training and community outreach will be included. There will be time to ask questions as you are directed to people and resources that will help strengthen your local church’s ministry to children.

Individual Appointments – You will have the opportunity to register for a one-hour appointment with one of the following team members. These will be on a first-registered basis and we will let you know the time of your appointment between 3-6 pm.

  • Ashley Belknap, Engaging Disability with the Gospel
  • Stephen Estock, CDM Coordinator
  • B.A. Snider, Great Commission Publications

Each church represented will receive a free copy of Children’s Ministry 101, which gives a covenantal approach to next-generation ministry.

Conference Details


  • Early Registration (deadline is September 20, 2019):  $150 $60 each (reduced by the generosity of donors) includes Friday dinner and Saturday lunch
  • Registration (deadline is September 27, 2019): $150  $75 (reduced by the generosity of donors) includes Friday dinner and Saturday lunch
  • Pre-Conference: $15/person
  • If there are 5 or more attending from the same church, the 6th person is free. Please contact Kathy Wargo for a code to register the 6th person.

When registering, you will indicate:

  • Your 3 workshop choices to attend on Saturday
  • If you will be attending the Pre-Conference training on Friday afternoon, ESTABLISHED, Children’s Ministry 101
  • If you would like to schedule a 1-hour individual appointment with one of our team members. [Register early for one of these appointments to be held between 3-6 pm on Friday. We will let you know the time of your appointment.]

If you have registration questions, please contact Kathy at or 678-825-1132.


Ashley Belknap serves as the Director of Engaging Disability (the Special Needs Ministry of the PCA). A gifted communicator with a Master of Arts in Theological Studies from Reformed Theological Seminary, Ashley has the ability to tackle challenging issues with creative and practical ministry applications. She served for four years as Director of Women’s Ministries at First Presbyterian Church in Jackson MS, where she led a wide variety of ministry initiatives. As the mother of a son with autism, Ashley has a personal passion to see families touched by disability reached with the good news of the gospel. Ashley and her husband, John, have three children and reside in Brandon, MS. 

Bethany Belue works for the PCA Committee on Discipleship Ministry as the Established and Certification Coordinator. Before coming to CDM, she worked in Children’s Ministry for 9 years at 2 large PCA churches as the Children’s Director, Redeemer Presbyterian in New York City and Oak Mountain Presbyterian in Birmingham. She lives in Mobile, AL with her husband Dustin.

Stephen Estock is Coordinator for the PCA Committee on Discipleship Ministries (CDM). A former USAF officer, he has been in pastoral ministry for 20 years, serving churches in Montgomery, AL and St. Louis, MO. Stephen has also been an adjunct professor at Birmingham Theological and Covenant Theological Seminaries. His Ph.D. is in education, with an emphasis on competency-based learning and leadership training. He and his wife, Susan, have three children and live in Atlanta, GA.

Mary Elizabeth Haynes grew up in Alabama and graduated from Auburn University where she studied Communication Disorders and Human Development, concentrating in infancy and preschool. After graduation, she served on staff with RUF at Texas Christian University for three years before moving to Chattanooga in the summer of 2016 and joining the team of the Chattanooga Youth Network. Mary Elizabeth lives at the base of Lookout Mountain and is a member of North Shore Fellowship (PCA). She loves to be outside and to read.

Sue Jakes is mother of four, grandmother of eight, and lives in Atlanta, GA where she serves as Children’s Ministry Coordinator for the Presbyterian Church in America’s Committee on Discipleship Ministries. She is also a teacher trainer and consultant for Great Commission Publications and the PCA’s Special Needs Ministry. She has served as director of children’s ministry at Covenant PCA in Fayetteville, GA and is now serving as children’s director at Westminster PCA in Atlanta. Sue received a Masters Degree in Education from West Georgia College, taught in the public schools for seven years and home-schooled for twenty-two years.  She has been teaching children, youth, and women’s groups in the church for over thirty-five years. Sue is co‑author of “Heart of the Home”, a Bible Study ministry for moms and Teach Me To Worship, CDM’s children’s church online curriculum.

Joseph Parker is a native Californian who spent nearly five years in Atlanta before God called him to Village Seven Presbyterian Church in Colorado Springs in 2018. After more than 25 years of ministry with children, he is committed to the equipping of adults to diligently disciple children in such a way they will grow to become Christ-changed, hope-filled, productive adults (Ps. 78:1-7). Joseph and his wife Kelly have two sons, whom they adopted in 2013.

B.A. Snider has more than 20 years’ experience as a children’s director in PCA churches ranging in size from 200 to 4,000 but finds her passion is the same no matter how many children she’s serving. Show the children Jesus. B.A. began her formal ministry as a children’s director and consultant in 1993, but she has taught and led music for children since she was in junior high school. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Tennessee and taught college until the Lord called her to seminary and full-time ministry. She graduated with a master’s degree in Christian Education from Columbia International University. Speaking at conferences, consulting with leadership, and training teachers brought her to Great Commission Publications in 2014 as the Children’s Ministry Consultant and Marketing Director.

If you are in a church plant or focusing on church revitalization, this is the conference for you! Make sure that someone on your team attends all the workshops with the ++ denotation. These are designed to help churches from the ground up, giving you new ideas for kick-starting ministry to children!

Workshop #1

  • All God’s Children Gotta’ Learn: Teaching the Bible to all Abilities and Learning Styles (Ashley Belknap) We want all our children to learn God’s Word and grow in their understanding of who God is and what He has done for us through the gospel. How can teachers simultaneously and effectively address a wide range of learning needs in the classroom? This workshop will focus on strategies for the whole classroom. You will walk away with the tools you need to figure out how your children learn and how to teach the Bible to students of all levels of ability.
  • ++Recruit, Recognize and Retain! Enjoy Success in Staffing Your Ministry (Bethany Belue) Do you struggle with recruiting volunteers for your ministries to families and children? You are not alone! In this session we will break down the challenges of recruiting and retaining volunteer teams and share creative solutions, suggest ways to recognize service, and offer encouragement for this vital aspect of your ministry.
  • ++Covenant: Know what that Means? (Sue Jakes) – How does Reformed and Covenantal theology define our ministry to children? From foundational principles to basic teaching methods, let’s compare typical children’s ministries to what we should be expecting as we seek to make Covenant keeping disciples.
  • Parenting with only the Gospel for Help (Stephen Estock)A deeper understanding of the freedom and power found in the gospel shapes the way parents raise their children in the Lord. This workshop explores how the good news of what Christ has done (and IS doing in the lives of parents and children) gives you freedom from the chains of parenting according to the shifting sands of contemporary culture.
  • Never Too Little To Learn Big Truths (B.A. Snider)Leading and loving Pre-Schoolers in worship and play is a crucial piece of Children’s Ministry. This workshop will discuss helpful hints for engaging and discipling our younger church body.

Workshop #2

  • Cultivating Parents who Actually Disciple their Children (Sue Jakes) – What are the best methods of encouraging and equipping your families in their discipleship journeys? This workshop will talk about the importance of healthy communication between home and church as well as practical tips to help make it happen.
  • Teach Me To Pray (Tony Souder) – Children learn to pray by example and participation. How can we effectively help them in praise, thanksgiving, confession, and intercession for themselves and others? We will look at a simple method that you and your children will enjoy.
  • Rocking, Reading, Reciting, Relating (B.A. Snider) Teaching in the nursery is sometimes the last thing on our mind. This workshop will talk about why we should be discipling children from infancy, but also specific ways to teach children from the time they enter your nursery ministry.
  • ++Not Much Fun, But Someone Has to do It! Policies and Procedures (Bethany Belue) – Rules and guidelines needed to provide security for your children and volunteers are no longer optional. Background checks to emergency evacuations – what all must be considered in providing the safest church environment possible?
  • ++Reach the Community through Your Children (Joseph Parker) – The Children’s Ministry can be one of the most strategic and effective ways in your church to reach the community, but how do we do it? Join us for a time of tips and discussion as we think about developing a well-rounded outward-faced Children’s Ministry through our Sunday programs and special events. 

Workshop #3

  • Enfolding Kids with Special Needs into Your Children’s Ministry: Easy Steps that Every Church Can Take (Ashley Belknap) – We will explore ways to foster spiritual, emotional, and relational growth for every child. We will also focus on ways to help parents and siblings be able to worship and grow through various ministries of the church. We’ll look not only at how families living with disability need the church, but also how the church needs them.
  • Let the Little Children Come: Training in Worship (Bethany Belue)God calls us to worship Him in all that we do. How do we include covenant children in that practice both at home and at church? While parents are the primary spiritual leaders for their children, they often feel lost or defeated in leading their children. What are practical ways the church can train children for worship and also equip and empower parents to lead family worship and disciple children in their homes?
  • Ministry To and Through our “Big Kids” (Sue Jakes) Transitioning and training older elementary to middle schoolers (3-6th graders) as they age out of children’s ministry is a crucial piece of ministry to our children. How can we love our children well as they transition, while raising them up to be servant leaders with true ownership of the ministry in ways that grow, support and value them.
  • ++Starting or Jump-Starting Your Ministry to Children (B.A. Snider) Whether building your church’s ministry from the ground up or strengthening an existing children’s ministry, what are the first steps and the most important parts to be considered? Mixed-age strategies applicable to small congregations and emerging church plants will also be discussed and considered.
  • Looking for the Change: Transformational Discipleship (Joseph Parker) How do we so intentionally disciple our children in the Gospel, that we see faith-based transformation occur? Come learn how Scripture informs us how to disciple children, and then to develop pragmatic means to do so using the resources available in your church.

Location: Colorado Springs, CO

Village Seven Presbyterian Church

4055 South Nonchalant Circle

Colorado Springs, CO 80917


Conference Schedule: Colorado Springs, CO

Friday, October 4, 2019

3:00-6:00 pm – ESTABLISHED: Children’s Ministry 101  – Sue Jakes and Joseph Parker

Spend the afternoon reviewing the new book by this title, unpacking all the basics of beginning, developing and sustaining ministry to children in your local congregation.

3:00-6:00 pm – Individual Appointments Register for a one-hour appointment with:

  • Ashley Belknap – Engaging Disability with the Gospel
  • Stephen Estock – CDM Coordinator
  • B.A. Snider – Great Commission Publications

Browse Bookstore and Exhibits

6:30-8:30 pm – Dinner and Opening Session

“Psalm 78 – The Great Value of Ministry to Children”

8:30-9:30 pm – Dessert Social – Visit Exhibits and Bookstore

Saturday, October 5, 2019

8:00-8:30 am – Continental Breakfast

8:45-9:30 am – Introductions, Instructions and A Charge for the Day

“Psalm 78: The Great Hope that is Ours” – Sue Jakes, CDM’s Children’s Ministry Coordinator

9:40-10:40 am – Workshop Session #1

10:40-11:00 am – Break

11:00-Noon – Workshop Session #2

Noon – Lunch and Panel Discussion

1:15-2:15 pm – Workshop Session #3

2:30-3:00 pm – Closing Session

“Psalm 78:  Established – THE Covenant Promise” – Dr. Stephen Estock, CDM’s Coordinator of Discipleship Ministries

Pre-Conference Optional Training and Appointment Opportunities:

Friday, October 4, 2019

CM 101 Children’s Ministry Training – Friday 3-6 pm. – Additional cost is $15/person – Sue Jakes and Joseph Parker

This 3-hour workshop is designed to review the entire CM101 resource book with an emphasis on how to start, develop and maintain a vibrant children’s ministry. Everything from parental support, recruiting and keeping volunteers to teacher training and community outreach will be included. There will be time to ask questions as you are directed to people and resources that will help strengthen your local church’s ministry to children.

Opportunity for individual meeting with one of our Team Members – Sign up for a 1 hour time slot to meet individually (or in a small group with others from your church) with one of these consultants on Friday afternoon. This time is an opportunity for you to ask questions, receive advice, brainstorm ideas, and consult with those who are experts in their field. They are here to help you with your ministry, your role, and your church.  Once you sign up for an appointment  you will receive an email from Bethany Belue 2 weeks in advance to confirm your specific time slot. We hope you will take advantage of this opportunity at the Established Conference.

  • Ashley Belknap, Engaging Disability with the Gospel
  • Stephen Estock, CDM Coordinator
  • B.A. Snider, Great Commission Publications


There are a number of hotel choices in the area.

Closest to the church and block of rooms has been reserved – Mention “Established Conference” for a special rate of $149/night with breakfast:
   –Holiday Inn Express and Suites, 3431 Cinema Pt., 719-596-6000
Please note that this special room rate will expire on September 3, 2019.
Near the airport:
   –Springhill Suites by Marriott, 1570 N. Newport Rd., 719-637-0800
   –Hampton Inn Airport, 2077 Aerotech Dr., 719-591-1100
Near North Academy & I-25:
     –The Academy Hotel Colorado, 8110 N. Academy., 719-598-5770

Media Kit:

Est CO Flyer

Register for COLORADO