Pastor's Pen

VBS & Day Camp: A Huge Blessing

Vacation Bible School and Day Camp were a tremendous success! We had a great team of teachers, assistant teachers (High School students), and adult staff (Snack and Registration volunteers.) I will not try to list every individual who worked at VBS for fear of leaving someone out. My personal thanks and the thanks of the entire congregation to everyone who teach, coached, led rotations, prepared and served snacks during VBS! We had a GREAT WEEK.

Looking at the June Finance Report, you might have wondered, “why are the expenses and deposits so high?) Well, the answer is simple: One of the two primary HVAC units that cools the Sanctuary “died” in late May. With no AC, we worshipped several weeks in the Fellowship. The total to replace the HVAC unit cost $17,682. To pay this bill, the Finance Committee and Deacons approved using $10,000 from Savings, $5,000 from the Building and Grounds Designated Account, and $2,682 from the General Funds Checking Account. It is a tremendous blessing that we already had this money available for a major expense such as replacing one of our primary HVAC units. The blessing comes with a caveat: we need to give to the Savings Account to build our reserves back to where they were before the HVAC. This giving should be above and beyond what we normally give as tithes and offerings.

More about VBS and Day Camp. It was truly a week that was blessed by God in many, many ways.

The numbers in VBS and Day Camp reflect this success. The numbers in parenthesis are last year’s numbers.

  • Total number of Students and Adults enrolled: 140 (108)
  • Total number of Students enrolled: 83 (74)
  • Total number of Adult and Youth Helpers: 57 (34)
  • Average Daily Attendance (Adults & Students): 105 (92)

It is easy to see that by every category this year’s VBS was a numeric success, but here are some other numbers:

VBS and Church Mission Project, collecting school supplies for the Children’s Restoration Network:

  • 42 bookbags filled with school supplies and ten or more boxes and bags of additional school supplies. This was a tremendous success! Thank you to everyone who gave supplies to this very worthy cause.

Mission Projects by our Youth Department

  • Prepared 80 bagged lunches for Calvary Refuge
  • Made Birthday Cards for the children at Calvary Refuge
  • Baked brownies and cookies for the Riverdale Fire and Police Departments

Career Options

Additionally, the Youth Department had three groups of adults talk with them about career options. Three Department Chairs at Southern Regional Medical Center talked to the Youth about careers in healthcare. Representatives from the Fire Department and the Police Department talked with the Youth about careers in their respective careers. The Youth went on a guided tour of the Fire Department and show several demonstrations of tasks that Firefighters perform as a part of their jobs. The Southern Regional professionals and the Firefighters also talked about the value of serving in a branch of the military. The Youth were extremely attentive throughout all these presentations! They were really a special group of Middle School Students.

A final word about VBS and Day Camp.

Due to staffing issues and the unavoidable absence of workers I had counted on to lead Youth VBS and Day Camp, by the middle of the week I was teaching three Bible Studies, directing VBS, and leading the Youth Day Camp. That was too much! By the end of the week I was physically, spiritually, and emotionally drained. That’s why Ann and I took a couple of days off and spent them in Pine Mountain. I learned that at 62 I can’t do what I could do when I was 42, or even 52. In the years to come, I will only do one job in VBS and Day Camp: teach, direct, or assist with Day Camp. Realizing my limitations is the most important lesson I learned from our week of VBS and Day Camp. May God lead me to remember this lesson next year!

~Pastor Jeff Lowe