August 8th – 12th, 2016
What a wonderful week we had for Vacation Bible Camp! Yes, it was hot and humid, but it didn’t dampen anyone’s enthusiasm. With 62 campers registered, it was a full house. But at times, as the leaders Labrador, Alpaca or Doe told stories, it was hard to believe your eyes that so many children could sit so quietly. When we announced juice boxes for snack, however, the roar was deafening.
This was our first joint venture with Camp Kintail, a Presbyterian Church Camp located on the Bluewater Highway, North of Goderich, Ontario. Their leaders provided the program – known as “Kintail on the Road” – and program leadership, while we handled administrative duties, and supplied the location, children, snacks and other leaders to guide and direct.
It was fun to learn that no matter what kind of fruit you want to be (including knocks on the head for coconut, or the roar and claw for dragonfruit), you can’t, “Cause the Fruit of the Spirit is Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulnees, Gentleness, and Self Control.” And all to a catchy tune I can’t get out of my head, though the actions still elude me. Labrador had a verse and action for every fruit the children suggested (Including a tomato: “it’s a fruit!”). The songs were all new and the children never seem to tire of doing the silly actions as part of the experience.
With daily themes like the courage to show up, to forgive, to stand, do justice or to change, the team played games, told stories, and directed crafts that illustrated the themes with more than just words; the children soaked it in. Speaking of a soaking, Wednesday was also Water Day and that cool water dripping down your back from a sponge was a relief from the heat. You almost wanted to be hit by a water balloon, if you had your bathing suit on.
Because we had a full day program, there was time for morning and afternoon snacks as well as lunch, which each child brought. There were so many lunch leftovers from Sunday’s Fund Raising Luncheon; we were able to feed all the leaders all week. Thanks to all who contributed. Snacks included strawberry and marshmallows kebabs, cookies and milk, Freezies, ice cream bars, oranges, watermelon, and ice cream cone cakes. The kitchen staff outdid themselves… no leftovers there!
When you hear children and parents saying, “This has been the best Vacation Bible Program, we have attended”, we know we found a good thing. Thank you, Stacey, for finding this and for all your work to make it happen. Thanks to the team from Kintail that brought enthusiasm to the work of training our “children in the way they should go.” We saw evidence of the learning happening already.
As I look back at those who contributed to the effort, I realized VBC this year was a multi-generational event. Children participated in the program. Our youth served as shepherds and guides. Parents became fellow worshippers on Friday as children led the worship service. Adults and seniors prepared and provided snacks and a cup of cold water. All of us serving and learning together.
Dawn McIlwraith, VBC Volunteer/Leader
August 16th, 2016