Pastors and churches, if you were able to find a way to help your church grow, would you do it? Well, I have good news for you. There is a way…it’s called Vacation Bible School! Lyle, you’re crazy (yes, that’s true)! However, regarding VBS, it’s the #1 outreach activity in our Southern Baptist churches. For example in 2017,
- More than 2.5 million children attended VBS
- Over 155,000 prospects were discovered for our churches
- 70,135 children/youth/adults made salvation decisions
- Greater than $6 million dollars for missions were given
In Alabama, nearly 50% of our churches celebrated VBS. Over 200,000 people enrolled with more than 7,000 decisions for Christ. In Pickens Baptist Association, 21 churches with 1,532 enrollees participated last year. This is great news! Notice, VBS has become the strategic outreach tool for churches to touch their communities with the message of Jesus Christ. VBS presents the Gospel message through a fun-filled, spiritual adventure which provides concentrated Bible study with real-life practical application.
Our associational VBS team is available to help and give you ideas to strengthen your outreach. Contact Amanda at our PBA office @ 205.367.8632 or @ firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, our state convention has a full slate of resources to help your VBS teams (https://alsbom.org/vbs/). Our desire is for you to create great opportunities to connect your church with your community.
A few other suggestions are:
- Be proactive in evangelizing those who participate in your Vacation Bible School. This is the one opportunity during the year when children/youth/adults are a captive audience. Make time each day to share the message of Christ to them. I realize that there is usually 1 day given for the pastor or VBS director to share, but remember that not all the folks will be there every day. So, don’t miss this opportunity!
- Decide what you will do with your offerings and promote it. If you don’t have something specifically planned, here are some ideas. Justin and Chandra Martin of Remedy City Ministries, Portland, Oregon are NAMB missionaries which the association supports. Also, your offerings can be donated to one or all of the 5 summer trips sponsored by Pickens Baptist Association. Another suggestion is giving to Baptist Global Response. BGR is the way to show the love of Jesus to those in need. Through gogbr.org/catalog or call 866.359.2852, a church VBS can choose 25 different ways to use your offerings to minister to the hopeless, homeless, and hurting in our world. 100% of your offerings will go to your choice of ministry.
- Finally, make sure to do follow-up. What’s follow-up? Follow-up is contacting the children/youth/adults who participated in your Vacation Bible School. It is important that you follow-up within a week or two after VBS. If not, you’ve basically lost them. As you do your planning, include follow-up! The growth of your church depends upon it.
Again, Vacation Bible School is a sure way to evangelize your community with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Do It!!
Until next month,