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Child Evangelism Fellowship


Our Mission

Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF) is an international interdenominational Christian nonprofit organization founded by Jesse Irvin Overholtzer (1877-1955) in 1937, headquartered in Warrenton, Missouri, United States.[1][2] The organization lists its purpose as teaching the Christian Gospel to children and encouraging children's involvement in local Christian churches. It has programs established in all US states and 192 countries, with 733 full-time workers in the US, an estimated 40,000 volunteers in the US and Canada, and over 1,200 missionaries overseas, approximately 1,000 of them nationals[vague]. During the reporting year ending December 2014, they reported teaching more than 19.9 million children, mostly through face-to-face ministry. CEF is a charter member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA). CEF was instrumental in the founding of the modern child evangelism movement which focuses on the 4/14 Window. The primary ministries of CEF are the 'Good News Club' and the '5-Day Club'. Both of these programs involve training members from various evangelical churches to effectively teach children in homes, neighborhood centers and schools. On June 11, 2001 the USA Supreme Court ruled in favor of allowing Good News Clubs to meet in public elementary schools after school hours, based on equal access and protection from viewpoint discrimination. Since that time CEF has been working to establish Good News Clubs in public schools around the USA. Currently, there are Good News Clubs in over 3000 public elementary schools.[citation needed] 5-Day Clubs are taught by youths who are trained through 'Christian Youth in Action' (CYIA). CYIA is a program operating all around America that trains teenagers to organize games and to interact with children, as well as to effectively teach children Bible stories, missionary stories, Bible verses, and the Wordless Book. CYIA is typically taught during the summer months at a camp or retreat where the teens are instructed and spend time practicing before teaching to younger children at 5-Day Clubs during the remainder of the Summer. The 'Children's Ministries Institute' is CEF's official training institute, and it holds 12-week training sessions in at least 15 countries every year including two on the CEF campus just west of St. Louis, Missouri. The organization has various outreach programs for children, and it provides classes to train its workers and other Christians who are tasked with evangelizing children. Additionally, CEF Press produces and distributes Bible and missionary lessons and related teaching materials, and it promotes evangelistic tools such as the Wordless Book. Since 1999 CEF has had a high volume correspondence program called the 'CEF Mailbox Club'. It was renamed the Truth Chasers Club in 2011. Lessons are available for every age group of children and for adults as well. The program is staffed primarily by volunteers who come from all over the country to help with the work. Hundreds of thousands of students have enrolled in the program and more than 10,000 lessons are graded and mailed on a normal week[citation needed]. The program is used by several other organizations as a discipleship program for the children whom they reach. These partnering agencies include the Jesus Film Project, Prison Fellowship International and Samaritan's Purse with the Operation Christmas Child program. Children are enrolled from around the world.

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Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF) is an international interdenominational Christian nonprofit organization founded by Jesse Irvin Overholtzer (1877-1955) in 1937, headquartered in Warrenton, Missouri, United States.[1][2] The organization lists its purpose as teaching the Christian Gospel to children and encouraging children’s involvement in local Christian churches. It has programs established in all US states and 192 countries, with 733 full-time workers in the US, an estimated 40,000 volunteers in the US and Canada, and over 1,200 missionaries overseas, approximately 1,000 of them nationals[vague]. During the reporting year ending December 2014, they reported teaching more than 19.9 million children, mostly through face-to-face ministry. CEF is a charter member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA).

CEF was instrumental in the founding of the modern child evangelism movement which focuses on the 4/14 Window.

The primary ministries of CEF are the ‘Good News Club’ and the ‘5-Day Club’. Both of these programs involve training members from various evangelical churches to effectively teach children in homes, neighborhood centers and schools. On June 11, 2001 the USA Supreme Court ruled in favor of allowing Good News Clubs to meet in public elementary schools after school hours, based on equal access and protection from viewpoint discrimination. Since that time CEF has been working to establish Good News Clubs in public schools around the USA. Currently, there are Good News Clubs in over 3000 public elementary schools.[citation needed]

5-Day Clubs are taught by youths who are trained through ‘Christian Youth in Action’ (CYIA). CYIA is a program operating all around America that trains teenagers to organize games and to interact with children, as well as to effectively teach children Bible stories, missionary stories, Bible verses, and the Wordless Book. CYIA is typically taught during the summer months at a camp or retreat where the teens are instructed and spend time practicing before teaching to younger children at 5-Day Clubs during the remainder of the Summer.

The ‘Children’s Ministries Institute’ is CEF’s official training institute, and it holds 12-week training sessions in at least 15 countries every year including two on the CEF campus just west of St. Louis, Missouri. The organization has various outreach programs for children, and it provides classes to train its workers and other Christians who are tasked with evangelizing children. Additionally, CEF Press produces and distributes Bible and missionary lessons and related teaching materials, and it promotes evangelistic tools such as the Wordless Book.

Since 1999 CEF has had a high volume correspondence program called the ‘CEF Mailbox Club’. It was renamed the Truth Chasers Club in 2011. Lessons are available for every age group of children and for adults as well. The program is staffed primarily by volunteers who come from all over the country to help with the work. Hundreds of thousands of students have enrolled in the program and more than 10,000 lessons are graded and mailed on a normal week[citation needed]. The program is used by several other organizations as a discipleship program for the children whom they reach. These partnering agencies include the Jesus Film Project, Prison Fellowship International and Samaritan’s Purse with the Operation Christmas Child program. Children are enrolled from around the world.
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