Monday, August 08, 2016

Churches Partner to Create a First-Rate VBS experience in the Inner-City

Vacation Bible School (VBS) is the highlight of the year for Baptist churches. It is an opportunity to teach children about Jesus and make contact with new families. This year we had a spectacular VBS on the Baptist Temple campus. Not because of our enrollment, 249, nor the number of workers, 96, not even the 32 professions of faith. Many churches have eclipsed those numbers. What was remarkable was that four churches sharing an inner-city campus joined forces to provide a top caliber VBS experience. The congregations included a Spanish language and a Deaf congregation. A 30 member short-term mission team from Houston added to both the success and the extraordinary nature of this bold ministry endeavor.

The stories are even more noteworthy than the numbers. The 32 professions of faith included children whose families are hostile to the gospel. This is not a dark cloud overshadowing a joyful event. This is the light of Jesus penetrating the darkness. “This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine,” will be the theme song of these young lives.

One woman, who recently committed her life to Christ, asked for a copy of the adult VBS class picture. It was her first Bible study. Ruby, one of our seniors, attended the adult class. She was not sure why God led her to attend until she gave away a Bible on the first day. She brought a Bible to give away each day of VBS.

Our mission project this year was to prepare emergency meal bags. One child overheard another telling us he had no food at home. He decided to give his bag to the hungry boy.

Hunger is a problem in our community. Over 90% of the children in our three closest elementary schools qualify for free and reduced lunches. We provided a free dinner each night for the folks involved with VBS, along with a healthy snack.

VBS helps us to minister to both the spiritual and physical needs of our community. Moreover, we created new relationships through which we can share God's love to the families in our community.

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