A CPC Hero to Me

At CPC you get to meet lots different kinds of people. My favorite is getting to finally meet ordinary people who use Kidology.org every week and are helped by our ministry and who I’ve perhaps e-mailed for years but finally get to put a name with an e-mail or who come up and introduce themselves and I find out they’ve been blessed by the ministry or somehow we’ve been able to “equip or encourage them” over the years. (Which is, by the way, our Mission!)

Some people like coming to CPC because you get to meet some pretty well known people too who have made an impact in children’s ministry. It’s true; you can, and in general, most are pretty approachable. I find most of those folks seems to handle their “status” with grace and humility, but just like high school, there are always a few who are surprisingly a bit snobby, which is disappointing, this is kids ministry, after all! I remember the first real “Big Name” kidmin person I met at one of my first CPC’s. My first time as a speaker I got to go the the speaker lounge (ooooo) and when I introduced myself to another fellow and said, “Hi, I’m Karl Bastian, who are you?” The answer I got was, “You don’t know who I am?” Well, I’ve never forgotten him since! I still have a hard time receiving his ministry – but I try to figure he was just having a bad prideful day, we all have those, right? Best to keep giant pictures of yourself off tall banners, it can have a bad effect on you! LOL.

But other times, and more often, luckily, folkds are pretty down to earth. And every so often you get to meet someone who has really touched your family’s life and they are completely unaware of it – and even when you thank them, they answer, “You must be confusing me with someone else, I’m not who you think I am.”

Oh, but she is.

I don’t have Karyn Henley on a pedestal at all. I’m sure she’s as human as the rest of us. Though, she’d probably never say, “You don’t know who I am?” Even though she has produced and written many wonderful products from the original Beginners Bible to the series of DVDs that I give a lot of the credit for my young son’s Godly character. I think she is one of those quiet gems that just is contributing to the Kingom without creating a lot of fanfare for herself. She and her husband Ralph have been faithfully ministering at CPC for as long as I have been coming to CPC, and that’s a very long time. They are what I call a rock solid ministry. They have blessed countless churches and families – but more specifically, I credit so much of my son’s character to the influence of Karyn. And she hasn’t even met him! But he has been singing her music for as long as he could sing and humming it since before then.

When so much preschool music is pointless rhyming drivel, we chose to fill our son’s mind with Karyn’s music and visual imagery starting at the youngest age. And while she may be quick to point out how “old” her videos are, I’d just say, “so is the Bible” but they both still contain timeless and life-changing truths that can transform young lives.

I could not believe the difference her music made in our little boy as he would listen to her music and then we could see the impact it was making in shaping his character. So getting to meet her today, and just say, “Thank you” was such a treat.

Thank You, Karyn. From the Bastians. I’m sure I represent many other families as well.

Karl and Sara, for Luke.

Karyn Henley and Karl Bastian

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  1. Agreed! Karen has contributed as much or more to children’s ministry than anyone I know. She’s probably the “least known” superstar among us…but that is a reflection of her quiet, servant heart. Anything she writes or produces is pure gold…old or new!

  2. Thanks for this wonderful tribute. Karyn is my top unsung hero in the world of discipling kids. Her stuff is relevant, incredibly age appropriate, and timeless. I’m so thankful for her and Ralph’s ministry over the years to my wife and I, to my own children, and to the little ones God allows me to care for. Hope you see this Karyn, and thank you!

  3. Karl, thank you for writing this! Karyn has made a huge impact on my life and ministry as well. My daughter and I read through the entire bible together using her Day by Day bible. Her materials are rich in depth and creativity but without flashy covers, bells or whistles. Sometimes I get skeptical “where’s the bling?” looks when I show other kid min leaders what we use at our church, until they take the time to read what is behind the cover. If you’re reading this Karyn, THANK YOU!

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