Developed as a resource for parents, Sabbath school teachers and children’s ministry leaders, the General Conference (GC) Children’s Ministries department has created a new app entitled “Armor of God” to help children learn and live out the principles taught in Ephesians Chapter 6.
Announcing the app for the first time at this year’s Spring Meeting (April 13), Linda Koh, director of GC Children’s Ministries, described the purpose of the app to “anchor children’s faith in God as they face anxiety, fear, and temptations in their life . . . [and] to put on the whole armor of God so they can stand against the wiles of the devil.”
Within the app are six game elements that children can unlock, each focused on a different piece of armor from the Ephesians 6 analogy. In-app games are framed within a story context, with two main characters, Anya and Aidan—Christian children who work with refugees—helping to guide users through gameplay.
Interactive & engaging in-app games
In-app games include word searches, jigsaw puzzles, coloring-in activities, memory verses, felts and stickers, and singalongs. Specifically, the word search highlights keywords within Bible verses, which points children back to reading their Bible. The jigsaw puzzle and coloring-in games feature scenes of the in-app story with Anya and Aidan, and will soon be updated with Bible story images.
“This is just the beginning. The app will continue to add new features, games, stories and more to help children learn about God and how we can put on His armor and grow in his grace,” the video presentation read.
Many of the games have been designed to appeal to a broad age group. For instance, the jigsaw has various difficulty levels to choose from, while the coloring-in allows children to choose between a pen, brush, and fill tool and utilize the whole color spectrum.
The app also makes learning Bible verses an enjoyable experience. Children can shake their device or hit a button to make particular words from a Bible verse fall away, and then add them back from memory. Original music has also been commissioned specifically for the app, with lyrics on screen allowing individuals and groups to sing along.
Finally, the sticker game—based on felt boards from children’s Sabbath schools popular in the 1990s and 2000s—allows children to select a background and then add digital stickers to construct a whole scene. This concept was developed as a collaboration between the GC’s Children’s Ministries and Sabbath School departments in 2011 and has been incorporated into the new app.
“You can see from the demo that we have actually developed an app within an app,” Koh explained. “The Bible story stickers app can function as a separate app for Bible study teachers or parents who want to tell a Bible story at church.”
Further resources: website and Bible studies
Another aspect of the app that will be added soon is Bible study resources within the sword motif, initially focusing on the armor of God, three angels’ messages and the fruit of the Spirit, but expanding thereafter.
“They are designed for Upper Elementary school students,” said Dr Koh. “There will be thought questions and fun activities beautifully illustrated for this age group.”
Beside the in-app Bible studies, the Children’s Ministries department has also developed a website specifically for children, parents and children’s ministry leaders at www.faithfinders.com. It contains downloadable books, animations, puzzles, music and videos. Children can even complete interactive puzzle games within the website itself.
“And this is just the beginning,” said Dr Koh. “In conjunction with the app, look out for other resources that will be produced—coloring books, reading level books and many more.”
In finishing her presentation, Dr Koh thanked the donor who had generously given to the app project. “May we continue to raise the next generation of children and teens who will stand firm when they put on the armor of God,” she said.
Dr Koh and the Children’s Ministries department encourage children’s ministry leaders to promote the “Armor of God” app in conferences and local churches.
“We want TMI—Total Member Involvement—and ‘total children involvement’, ‘total youth involvement’,” said World Church president Ted Wilson. “Using the talents and abilities of children, what a blessing it is to be part of God’s precious church.”
The Armor of God app will be available to download on iOS and Android at XYZ DATE. Please visit faithfinders.com for updates on the app and further resources for children in your care.