Kids and Parents Submerged in Fun and the Gospel at VBS
Another Stowe Mission annual Vacation Bible School is in the books. Led by Jackie Frasure, Director of Children's Ministries at Dublin Baptist Church, the aim of the annual event was to spread the gospel of Christ to a group of local kids who may not have ever heard it. In the end, Vacation Bible School (VBS) did even more than that.
Each of the four nights of VBS began with a free meal for the community, prepared and served by volunteers from Dublin Baptist Church. On the final night alone, over 400 meals were served to community members, who were able to gather together in the Stowe Mission parking lot to break bread and share an evening with one another and the volunteers. That very night a few local residents confirmed that they had accepted Jesus into their hearts.
Meanwhile, many of the kids attending VBS were nearly too eager to eat, downing their meals as quickly as possible in the hopes that if the meal ended sooner, the actual VBS would come about that much more quickly.
At one point, a group of children ran for the building, asking impatiently, “is it time yet?” Just seconds later, they ran back just as fast, announcing “two more minutes!” When it was finally time for the activities to begin, the children, almost entirely from within the blocks surrounding Stowe Mission, were bursting with energy. Not only were the children excited, but a number of parents stayed to be with their children and found themselves both participating in the program and hearing a message that resonated with them.
Everything started with a song and choreography to match, from the Submerged VBS theme. Right from the start of the music, the children danced along to the moves they had learned over the previous few nights, not one of them—not even the adolescents—at all bashful. That infectious energy and eager participation would carry on throughout the night as the kids continued to sing, dance and learn more and more about God and His son Jesus.
The theme of Submerged is taken from Psalm 139:23-24, which reads: “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my concerns. See if there is any offensive way in me; lead me in the everlasting way.” Throughout the week, Frasure, along with a handful of volunteers from her church which included her own children, worked to show the kids how Jesus looked deep down on the inside of those He met, and does so still. Further reinforcing these ideas, the motto of the VBS is “Jesus sees. Jesus knows. Jesus saves.” By the final night, the kids were able to recite that motto, and some even the entire two verses above, by heart.
Along with the message came scripture readings and explanations, prayers, and the simple yet profound sharing of the Gospel. Kids were given prizes throughout the nights, they made crafts including a picture frame to go along with photos from a photo booth that had been set up for the last night, sweet treats were handed out, and ever more children continued spilling in as the nights went on.
At the end of the final evening, as things were wrapping up after a busy week and the volunteers handed out the last of the prizes, there was an air of reluctance in the room. Many of the kids wandered around the space, helping to clean up, while parents sat together laughing and watching their children interact. There was truly a sense of connectedness in the room, as all had been brought under the same roof to hear the Word of God, and it was clear that His work had been done.
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