Ever since I can remember, Vacation Bible School has been one of the highlights of summer vacation. Kids — and, I suspect, parents — look forward to it, though perhaps for different reasons.
It’s fun for kids, a chance to learn something different, in an atmosphere that is less restrictive than that of “regular” school. (And, sadly, for some kids, it’s the only place they learn that “God” and “Jesus” are not just words of profanity.)
I remember, when I was in high school, helping to teach VBS at my church in a little town in upstate New York.
My class was 5- and 6- year-olds, and how those kids loved Bible stories! David and Goliath, Gideon and his fleece, Samson — and then, of course, the wonderful stories of the life of Jesus.
The availability of VBS here has varied over the years I’ve been writing this column, but we’ve always had several. I was getting worried it wasn’t going to happen this year, but the information is coming in and the kids are not going to be disappointed. They’ll learn about Jesus, have fun, and instead of complaining about being bored, they’ll be regaling Mom with tales of what was learned that morning.
A lot of our church congregations these days are too small to support a program — and sometimes some of them join together to put one on, and I think that is one great idea.
We now have a preliminary list, and of those, more complete info on a couple programs. At this point, the schedule is as follows, and more information will be added as it is obtained:
• First Baptist Church, July 1–3 from 9 to 11:30 a.m. For kids in grades 1–5, the theme will be the life of Jesus. There will be crafts, games, music and snacks.
• Smith River Baptist, July 22–26, 9 a.m. to noon.
• Gasquet Bible Church, July 8–12, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. The program, “Jesus Our King,” will be led by Roy and Elvia Sprague. The week’s event will consist of stories, learning Bible verses, music, fun times — and, of course, refreshments.
• Pelican Bay Evangelical Free Church, July 8–11, from 9 a.m. to noon. For information, call Summer Fitch, 954-8097.
• Foursquare and Cornerstone combined, July 15–19, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Call Juan at Foursquare.
• St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, plans not finalized, but VBS planned.
Meanwhile, Crescent City Classic Films will be presenting movies every Friday night in the Fireside Room at Foursquare Church, beginning promptly at 7 p.m. The weekly screenings will be free and open to the public. The plan is to provide a free and fun option for members of the community throughout the summer with classic, family-friendly films.
The first film on June 21 will be “Casablanca,” followed by subsequent Fridays with “Breakfast at Tiffanys,” “Pat and Mike,” “Gaslight,” “Murder, She Said,” “Chicken Run” and “Wallace and Grommit.”
Snacks and food will be available for sale.
Finally, Sunday is Father’s Day. In my family, it also means a couple of birthday celebrations.
Although it was my younger son, Tim, who was born on that day, this year, Jim will also celebrate on Father’s Day.
Having two boys a year and two days apart was like having twins! But they have grown into men to be proud of, excellent fathers in their own right.
I would love to be able to see them — but they are in New York, so I will mark the day with my church family instead.
The New Life Community Church will celebrate with a potluck at the home of Marilyn and Robert Read at 1 p.m.
The church will supply the meat (barbecued chicken, I understand) and those attending should bring side dishes or desserts.
The Read home is off Highway 101 across from the KOA campground. Balloons will mark the turn, and there will be someone to help direct parking.
Additional VBS information will be much appreciated — and please correct me if I’ve listed wrong dates or times, or if I’ve missed you.