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Catch Up with Jonathan

Your absence has gone through me
Like thread through a needle
Everything I do is stitched with its color.
~W.S. Merwin, “Separation”

Have you noticed, I’ve been missing from this blog in the past two weeks?  The combination of Orange Conference over-posting, and a busy personal life has created a vacant blog schedule.  Sure I knocked out something on Mother’s Day, and you saw an already scheduled update of our newest Kidsplace Promo video…but really nothing about me.  That’s why I have this blog, right?  Because there are people out there that want to know about me!

If you’re still reading, then let’s hope that you know my tounge is planted firmly in my cheek.  It’s not all about me, and being at the Orange Conference reminded me of that.  I met so many of you guys that read this lame website, that I feel obligated to fill you in on much of what has been occupying my world lately.  Can I share what’s up in my Ministry life?

  • I’ve hired a new Early Childhood Coordinator at Trinity!  About three months ago I made a staffing change, and my entire team and I have been scrambling ever since.  I’m real excited to have Deborah Winkler on our team in this role, but hiring her has created a new opening.  Now I’m hiring an Administrative Assistant!
  • When I get my Admin Assistant hired, it will finally complete my 6 person team for the first time since early this year.  It’s stinks to be operating at full throttle, with less than a complete staffing team!  Whew!
  • I smell a curriculum change coming!  In our Elementary areas we have used Elevate! for almost 3 years.  It’s been an overall good experience, but some recent changes in the creation of Elevate! have rendered it unusable for us.  (Send me an email, and I’ll explain in private.)  In August of 2010 we will transition to 252 Basics in Elementary, and are looking closely at starting First Look in our Early Childhood environments.
  • Since we are moving to 252 Basics in August, we were in search of something to get us through the summer months of programming and have settled on BIG by Hillsong Kids.  We’re one week into the BIG experience, and so far so good.  I love it’s flexibility, and long 13 week (with 3 segments) schedule.  We’re using the Follow You package through BIG, and the kids are loving it right now.
  • The Summer events are starting at the end of this month.  We will be continuing are Family Fun Day events from last year, along with a couple of “drop the kids” events squeezed in between.  We will also run a special 4 night event that will run in conjunction with our Holy Spirit Inspire church conference (we like to think of this as our VBS-alternative.)  We have also created a special over-night bonding event for our 4th and 5th graders that will happen in late July.  We’ve designed it so that the Jr. High leaders can be involved in getting to know the kids that will be in their areas in August, and the year after.  This is a first-time event for us, so fingers are crossed!

That covers most of the ministry things happening in my life.  Now, admit it.  You feel like you know me better, right?

Jonathan Cliff is married to his wife Starr and they together live out their days with two sons and a daughter. Jonathan serves as one of the Pastors at Grace Community Church in Clarksville, Tennessee; where he works with leaders throughout the city to help develop Christian community that leads to deep and meaningful spiritual friendships. His journey has been an adventurous one, having served in the local church for 15 years in family ministry developing leaders, building environments for kids and students to belong, and encouraging parents to take big spiritual steps with their families.


  1. Wayne Stocks · May 18, 2010

    Interesting to hear your switching over to 252 Basics. We’ve been using it for almost a year and a half now. I hope you’ll share some of your thoughts once you start using it.
    .-= Wayne Stocks ´s last blog ..What Matters Now in Children s Ministry Worldview =-.

  2. Wayne Stocks · May 18, 2010

    Oh, and welcome back. :)
    .-= Wayne Stocks ´s last blog ..What Matters Now in Children s Ministry Worldview =-.

  3. Anthony Prince · May 18, 2010

    Welcome back, indeed!
    The interwebospherenet and all of it’s inhabitants missed you.
    .-= Anthony Prince ´s last blog ..Top 10 Reasons I Want You on Staff =-.

  4. Lisa · May 26, 2010

    Oh, I really wish I were rich, so I could buy both of those curriculums for my kids!!!! I want to buy these so bad!!!!! The 252 one is EXPENSIVE though!! Wow!

  5. Rebecca · May 27, 2010

    I would love to hear how the retreat goes–we are working on developing some special programming for 4th and 5th graders and need ideas!
    .-= Rebecca ´s last blog ..Inviting God into Your Home: Keeping Your Own Glass Full =-.