MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

Where are You?

July 8th, 2008 Viewed 1456 times

Tire swing kids

This week is Vacation Bible School at my church—first time in a few years.  So, I’m knee deep in Dinosaurs, song leading, and having kids battling a virus.

So, I’m around, commenting, visiting, and using Stumble Upon for some commentary (and even a little Twitter) but haven’t gotten a chance, really, for any good posts.  Though I have some really great topics—so you’ll just have to stay tuned.

All In One Room or Multiple Rooms?

July 28th, 2007 Viewed 1603 times, 1 so far today

There seem to be two prevailing styles of Vacation Bible School out there today– one that has the children in the same room for the whole week and one that has them switching rooms every day.

Each of these has benefits for the students and the teachers, but each of them also has potential downfalls.  I am personally in favor of having the children in the same room all week, but I believe that having them switch also has its place.

Having The Kids In The Same Room All Week

The biggest reason I believe that this is the most beneficial way of running a VBS is the bond that can be formed between the students and the teacher.  In one week, you will probably know the names of all the children in the group, you may have a good idea of their spiritual aptitude, if not whether they are saved, and they will know you.

The crafts can be more intricate, because you can spend multiple nights working on them.  The same can be said about helping them to memorize more verses, and to actually show an interest in their lives.

The problems can arise because there is more work needed on the part of the leaders.  You have to be interesting every night (which can get difficult near the end of the week).  You plan all of your crafts, instead of having a one-night easy craft.  You will also get compared against other classes and what they are doing.

Having The Kids In Different Rooms Each Night

The biggest benefit here is in “theme-ing” and lesson preparation.  Because you have a specific night, instead of 7 to prepare for, your theme can be very specific.  You also only have one craft to prepare, one lesson to memorize, and as long as your careful and don’t “peak” too early, it’ll still be interesting by the end of the week, and you’ll probably be ready for any question.

The downsides here is that you may never know the kids names, or reach them on a more than very superficial level since you only will have them for a short period of time, that you will not be able to really know what was taught before to be able to build on it, and that you’re more detached from the kids.

What have you done in your VBS, and how effective do you feel it has been?

Are We Too Much Fun?

July 26th, 2007 Viewed 1832 times

One of the hardest questions I think that a church activity has to answer is are we trying to be too much fun.  The question that I believe we are trying to answer, though, is scary in its bluntness:

“Why should someone want to come to my church activity?”

Our answer to this question will say a lot about our ministry, what we think of God and the message that we have to give.  What I find interesting is that traditionally the feature that “sold” Christianity was salvation from sin.  Sure, there’s the promise of Heaven, and the chance to escape Hell, but when a preacher came on the scene and proclaimed the Word, people came forward, lives were changed, and a world was impacted.

Now, we have to hope that we can get a famous person to come.  Or we have to stress about what activities we have planned.  We’re concerned about if children think that we’re fun, and we’re moving as quickly as we can out of the lesson and to the times that we think the kids enjoy more: refreshments, crafts, game time, and openings/closings.  Does something seem amiss here?

Tuesday, Michelle Potter, commented that a community that she was involved with held an all day VBS.  The more I think about this, the more interested I become.  If you start to think about parents sending kids with enrollment forms (relieves the pressure of wondering whether the kids will come back), different classes you could have, more exposure, and leveraging the Christians in the community you think– whew– that’s a lot of work.

But after you get over that, you begin to wonder why we don’t do this more.  Partner churches together.  Maybe make it more than one week.  Esp if you have a church school.

Or are we just not really all that serious about reaching the lost as we say we are?

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.