Vacation Bible Schools in the Hardin County area have fallen on hard times after having to cancel in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Now it looks like they are back.
Rochelle Moore, associate minister at First Baptist Church in Elizabethtown, said she brought back their VBS this summer after three years.
“I think the kids are excited…because it gives them something to look forward to,” she said.
Moore worked on the musical aspects at this year’s VBS, which lasted for a week in June.
She said the average daily attendance was around 80 to 85 children.
There are classes for different age groups with dinner and daily scripture.
Moore said VBS is a way to keep those kids engaged over the summer, and maybe come away with something to look forward to or look forward to in the future in terms of spiritual growth.
“In the times we now live in… biblical instruction in particular is crucial,” she said. “And when you can take the Bible and make it fun, people learn more.”
Rio Taylor, senior pastor of Gilead Baptist Church, said the church was able to have VBS last year, but not the year before.
The same goes for Valley Creek Baptist Church, according to children’s minister Crystal Townsend.
Each of their offerings took place around the week of July 11.
Taylor said the turnout this summer was higher than last year and there were an average of more than 50 kids in attendance each day.
Gilead and Valley Creek used materials from Lifeway VBS called Spark Studios, which focus on the scripture Ephesians 2:10, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has prepared in advance for us to do them”.
Taylor said the message and theme they instill is that God’s masterpiece is “every individual who bears his image, that is, everyone”.
He said that children listen to different stories related to this theme, as well as art projects.
In the basement of the church, some of the VBS attendees were creating artwork from an idea created by Regina Williams, owner of the Nolin River Art Studio.
Children paint their best recreation of Vincent Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’, then glue their hands together from Michelangelo’s painting ‘The Creation of Adam’, creating a multimedia work.
“The hope is that these children will know that they are loved by God,” he said.
Townsend said attendance has increased from last summer, averaging 60 to 80 children a day.
She said VBS begins with a high-energy gathering with lots of singing and dancing. Then there are games, art projects, Bible studies, snacks and meals.
Townsend said she loved seeing the same kids growing up over the years at VBS.
“VBS is just a tremendous opportunity for intergenerational ministry,” she said. “This is the only year we have people of all different ages, age groups working together for the same purpose of sharing the gospel with children.”
Andrew Harp can be reached at 270-505-1414 or [email protected]