VBS is coming soon, and you’re probably up to your ears in prep work. In the midst of the busyness, do you ever find yourself wondering, Why do we do VBS anyway? Our churches invest significant volunteer hours and finances into this ministry. Are we clear on why we do it?
Earlier this year at a meeting with several Children’s Ministry leaders from a variety of different churches, I took advantage of the opportunity to ask them that very question: “Why do you do Vacation Bible School? Give me your top two reasons.”
I received feedback from 14 different churches, and I found their replies interesting. Before you look at the list below, how would you answer that question?
1. Outreach was mentioned on 13 out of 14 lists as the primary purpose of VBS. They said,
“…50% of our kids are from the community, so outreach is a big part.”
“….a great opportunity for kids to hear the Gospel.”
“….this is the primary outreach tool for our children’s ministry.”
“….to introduce kids to Jesus.”
“….to reach unchurched kids and families with the Gospel.”
2. The kids love it! (5 out of the 14)
“….a fun and great time for kids to get together during the summer.”
“….God’s love shared in a fun environment.”
“….kids kind of take over the church for a week.”
“….give kids a positive church experience.”
3. Present God’s truth in a manner kids will understand (5 out of the 14)
“….Fellowship with awesome teaching.”
“….Deepen the faith of all the kids who attend by presenting God’s Word.”
4. Fellowship for leaders and kids (4 out of the 14)
“…bring the body together to fellowship.”
“….gives leaders a chance to connect with students during the summer.”
“….gives volunteers a chance to use their gifts for the sake of the body.”
Although this survey was not scientific or definitive, it reflects the thoughts of leaders at quite a few different churches. As I read over the list, I am reminded that there are many significant benefits to VBS. We don’t do VBS for just one or two reasons. Through VBS, we minister to the kids from our church, we reach out and connect with kids in the community, we present the gospel, we touch families’ lives, and we teach the Word in creative ways that provide an opportunity for kids to connect with Jesus and to learn to grow in his Word. Fellowship, using our gifts, leadership development…this all takes place during the significant week of ministry we call VBS!
As you think about all these benefits of VBS and prepare for a great week this summer, be sure to get your leaders and volunteers on the same page so your entire team can say, “We know why we do VBS!”