Vacation Bible Adventure 2012: Soul Wars Recap [with pics].

Posted: July 8, 2012 in Uncategorized

If you’re involved in Children’s Ministry in some way, then you know that summer is “that” time of year!  You prepare for one of the most popularized forms of Children’s Ministry outreach – the craziness known as Vacation Bible School.  At SVCC, it’s easily the most anticipated week of the year, and much time, resources, and prayer surrounds this very event.

Everyone does VBS (or, in our case, VBA – Vacation Bible Adventure) differently.  I always enjoy hearing about the methods used/avoided by other churches, so I thought I’d share what we do.  I would absolutely love to hear how you and your church does this.  As Children’s Ministers, we’re a Faith Community…and the networking of ideas and resources is one of the many ways we can stay connected and support one another!

With that said, here’s what we do.

-VBA takes place the last week of June.  It takes a lot to prepare for it, so we don’t want to overwhelm those volunteers by having them spend the majority of their summer preparing.

-6pm to 8:30pm, Mon.-Fri. = more volunteers available to serve since it’s at night.

-VBA is available to children who are age 4 (by July 31st) thru 6th grade of the upcoming school year.  It is free of charge.  We also have a nursery component, available for children ages 3 and under.  Their parents must be volunteers.

-We develop our own curriculum each year.  ‘Soul Wars’ derived from Star Wars.  We like to choose a theme that’s easy for kids to connect to.  “May the FAITH be with you.”  Faith was the centerpiece of our daily Bible Stories and Themes:

  • Monday: By FAITH, Gideon was VICTORIOUS!
  • Tuesday:  By FAITH, Esther was BRAVE!
  • Wednesday: By FAITH, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego said NO!
  • Thursday: By FAITH, Jesus fought TEMPTATION!
  • Friday:  By FAITH in Jesus, I am SAVED!

-Church Workdays (Saturdays) are established so that volunteers can come to the campus and work on a construction assignment.  We lean heavily on the set designs and environment.  Lots of work has to be done so that the Death Star can indeed be on our stage 😉

-Meetings are coordinated ahead of time for each area: Construction, Crew Leaders, Craft, Snack, Pre-K, Nursery, Games, Skits, Song, etc.  The night before VBA, we have a volunteer meeting/rally to get everyone psyched up for the week, and for prayer!

-The format: Opening – Rotation Time – Closing.

  •  Opening = Welcome, Worship, Soul Wars Skit.  All ages start together, and then split to their areas for rotation (early childhood, pre-k, elementary).
  • Rotation Time
  •      Snack: We offer a free dinner each night for the kids.  Pizza night, burger night, hot dogs, PB &J, etc.  We partner with local businesses and have some financial support from the congregation to make this possible.
  •      Craft:  We made flutes, necklaces, bracelets, and light sabers.
  •      Song:  Each day, the song crew taught the kids a new worship song with motions, while reinforcing the Bible Point and Bible Verse.
  •      Bible:  Brand new story each day that reinforces the theme.  The Gospel was presented to the kids on the last day…and over 200 kids responded in some way!  Praise Jesus!
  •      Game:  This year we did something a bit different with this station.  We had four sets of games that the groups rotated through when they were at the game station.  The kids loved having variety each day!

*Other important elements:

  • Dress Up Days:  (Monday = VBA Shirt Day, Tuesday = Crazy Hair/Hat Day, Wednesday = Wacky/Nerdy Day, Thursday = Star Wars Day, Friday = Water Day).  On water day, we rent water slides for the kids to enjoy!
  • Missions Challenge:  We encouraged the kids to take part in a Missions Project to support a local (School Supplies/Backpacks for kids in Lemoore), national (Disaster Relief for the city of Joplin), and international (Furaha Center in Kenya) ministry.  We made it a friendly competition between the boys and girls!  The boys were ‘victorious’ – but the victory really comes by seeing 710 kids raise over $4000 to bless people in the name of Jesus!
  • Community:  One of my favorite things about VBA is seeing how it brings people together through serving.  These people may not have been connected at all if not for this opportunity – so it’s awesome to see how people work alongside each other in order to bless the kids.
  • Support:  Every single pastor at our church is heavily involved in our VBA.  Every.  Single.  Pastor.  They build, they write, they rehearse, they dress up, they lead stations, they lead kids to Christ, they make runs to Home Depot/Lowe’s.  This isn’t common…and I am so blessed to work with a staff that believes so deeply in the importance of children’s ministry!  One of our pastors’ wife is our VBA director, and she is A-MA-ZING!  She has an amazing heart for kids, and a wealth of experience with VBA.

Anyhow…that’s the gist of it. I am so very thankful for all who have made this year’s VBA possible.  Whether your were visible to the public or behind the scenes, your faithfulness and willingness blessed HUNDREDS of kids and parents.  I praise God for you!

For my fellow kidmin friends, please know that I am praying for you and your teams as you minister to your kids…whether through a VBS, or through your normal modes of operation!

May the FAITH be with you! 🙂

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