Tag Archives: VBS

God at Work in Redcliff and Beyond

by Verna Doerksen

REDCLIFF, Alta.—Amazing, awesome, powerful are words to describe some of this summer’s events.

The first was the May 28, 2017, chartering service of the Gospel Light Fellowship. With a larger meeting room rented, the exciting day began with as many as 120 attending, more than doubling our regular attendance. With singing in between the testimonies of those becoming members, the service went on and on. But nobody seemed to care.

Finally, at 1 p.m., we had to break for our potluck feast—barbecued burgers and hotdogs, and salads galore. No one had room for the desserts, nor was there time. Those could wait until later (faspa, a light supper).

At 2 p.m. we resumed the service for more testimonies. Specially there for the occasion was Charles Koop, church planting coordinator, from Calgary as an EMC representative to install Abe and Anna Bueckert as the pastoral couple. Abe Bueckert in turn welcomed 17 more into membership.

Also present were John and Joyce Dyck from Manitoba who have been involved here from the beginning; John was the speaker at that very first Sunday morning service in November 2014.

Several testimonies included the following verses: “All who believe in the Son of God know in their hearts that this testimony is true. Those who don’t believe this are actually calling God a liar because they don’t believe what God has testified about his Son. And this is what God has testified: He has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have God’s Son does not have life” (1 John 5:10-12 NLT).

God is bringing a church, a body of believers together!

In June we rejoiced at the baptism of Wili Koethler and Suzy Fehr down by the river. This certainly was another exciting day with visitors and a picnic to top it off. We finished the day with a communion service back at the church.

A huge thank you goes to the EMC for their financial support of the fourth annual gospel music jamboree in July, which was another highlight. Hundreds came to listen to the wonderful music and the gospel presentation. One person said this was his favourite Jambouree of all the ones he had been to. Another attendee was going to come back next year with more friends.

Then came the four-day VBS, not huge in numbers, but big in that mothers came to listen and one boy claimed this to be the best time of his life.

Last of the summer events was a church camp-out, a good time to connect with those in our church fellowship. Softball, volleyball, games, lots of yummy food, and singing were among the weekend’s activities.

We are indeed blessed. God be praised and given all the glory!

Hillside: Bible Study, VBS, and Breakfast

by Jennifer Driedger

Buffalo Head Prairie, Alta.—Okay, now where do I start? I only have 500 words. Well, let’s see. I can give you a summary of the year so far. From September to the end of March we have Family Bible Study on Wednesday nights at 7:30 at the church. Everyone is welcome. We start off by praying and singing. Then we kids, ages three to 15 depending on the day (normally there are only five of us), head downstairs.

From September to December we did it with Telita Janzen; then she passed away from cancer on Jan. 30 this year. So now we kids have our lesson time with Laural Ann Plett, Pastor Jeff Plett’s wife. We have a lesson downstairs while the adults do their Bible study upstairs. When Telita was here, we kids would tie bags for MCC school kits during our lesson time.

Sunday School runs from September to June. We have five classes: a boy’s class with three boys, a girl’s youth class with about five girls, the nursery class with six kids, a mothers’ class, and an adult class.

For Christmas 2016 the Sunday School classes practised songs or skits. The girls’ and mothers’ classes joined together and sang Star of The East in two-, almost three-part harmony. The boys’ class and the girls’ class, with some help from our dads, performed a skit on “Shadrack, Meshack and Abednego and the Fiery Furnace.” The nursery class also sang.

From July 31 to Aug. 4 we had VBS. Two girls who worked with Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF) came up from Edmonton and led the lesson part. The VBS started at 7 p.m. Kids ages four to 12 sang, memorized Bible verses, and got to hear stories about missionaries and the story of Jesus. After the lesson time, the kids got to play games with Pastor Jeff or go downstairs and have crafts with Mrs. Wheeler and Mrs. Doerksen. After the crafts or the games, they had a snack before they were sent home hyper. We were blessed to have around 15 kids show up to learn about God.

Year-round there is a men’s prayer breakfast every other Saturday. Some of the men from the church get together at 8 in the morning at the church. They take turns making breakfast, and then they pray and fellowship before starting their day. I don’t know much about this because I never go, but my Dad does and so it made it in here.

‘Digging for Treasure’ in Jesus’ parables

by MennoMedia

MennoMedia 2017 Bible school curriculum ready for orders

KITCHENER, Ont.—The parables of Jesus contain rich hidden gems. With the theme Digging for Treasure: Parables Revealed, the 2017 Vacation Bible School series from MennoMedia gives children tools to find treasures of God’s kingdom.

“This year’s theme responds to a survey in which people said they would like to study parables during VBS,” writes project director Mary Ann Weber. “The parables reveal things about the kingdom of heaven, about God, and about how much God loves us.”

The five-day curriculum brings children both stories and activities about the sower and the seed, the lost sheep and lost coin, the mustard seed, and others. Through drama, worship, creative activities, and song, children will find the spiritual wealth in these ever-new stories from Jesus.

Children’s booklets, Treasure Map and My Book of Stories, and a CD of energetic worship songs help draw children into exploring the world of Jesus’ stories and teachings. Leader’s guides help teachers lead VBS for children from age 4 through grade 5. Adaptations for grades 6–8 are offered on a resource CD, a new feature in this year’s curriculum.

The CD provides additional helpful tools to publicize VBS, a Bible memory slide show, name tags, and other resources designed to equip leaders in implementing an effective, dynamic VBS program.  Digging for Treasure includes leader’s guides for active response, Bible response, creative response, and worship and drama.

Digging for Treasure may be ordered in an all-in-one boxed set including everything needed for planning and preparation. All items are also available separately. More information is at: http://www.mennomedia.org/vbs.

Taber: Dedications, Baptisms, VBS, and Landscaping

by Naomi Klassen

TABER, Alta.—Spring and summer have been busy and exciting here in Taber. In May we had baby dedication that included 12 families!

April and Andy Klasen dedicated their daughter Sydney and their son Zachery; Peter and Marianne Neufeld dedicated their son Donavon; John and Linnea Dyck dedicated their son Dominick; Jake and Susie Quiring dedicated their son Emmett; Rudy and Sandra Friesen dedicated their daughter Alysha and their son Colton; Lyndon and Naomi Klassen and their daughter Carmen; Jake and Eva Koethler and their son Lucas, Benny and Darlene Penner and their daughter Sofia, Abe and Eva Klassen and their son Ivan; Ike and Margaret WIebe and their son Caylan; Henry and Anna Klassen and their son Adam and Jaime and Susie Thiessen and their daughter Sophie.

It was a very busy baby dedication and although the babies didn’t always cooperate, it made for an entertaining dedication service for those watching. All the families were presented with a framed photograph and certificate of dedication for their child.

We also had the pleasure of having a large baptism class this spring with 10 new members and another two people transferring their membership. It is always encouraging to see these young people take this public step of declaration and dedication for their faith in God. The baptism candidates were John Zacharias, Martha Bueckert, Martha Friesen, Henry Zacharias, David Dyck, Cornelius Fehr, Verna Fehr, Mary Wiebe, Heinrich Peters and Susie Neustaeter. Membership transfers were Peter and Susanna Neufeld.

This summer we also held Cave Quest VBS at our church during August. We had the pleasure of teaching 116 children about God and the ways that Jesus helps us through giving us hope, courage, direction, love and power. The VBS committee did an amazing job decorating the church to look like a cave, complete with stalactites and all! There were many hard working volunteers that helped make our VBS a huge success again this year.

The other project that has been going on this summer is the landscaping around the church. In spring the church received a donation specifically to complete some much needed landscaping on the churchyard. The church voted to match the donation and a committee was created to take on the large task. They have put many hours into making the churchyard look beautiful.

Improvements include planting perennials around the outside of the church building, creating a lawn and seating area and also planting trees and new grass on the west side. The project also included adding an in-ground sprinkler system to keep all these beautiful new additions looking green.

The project is now complete and we are waiting for our new grass to grow. We are hopeful that by next summer we will be able to see the children outside playing on the lawn and maybe even add some picnic tables so we can use it for summer potlucks.

Crestview: Ribbon-Cutting, VBS Held

By Sharron Straub

Winnipeg, Man.—There’s been a lot happening around here this summer.

Melvin and Kari Peters, who serve with Mission Aviation Fellowship in Africa, were with us on July 10 to report on the work they are doing in starting up and developing the new sub-base in Marsabit; they bring the love of Christ to those living in isolation in northern Kenya.

Darrell Thiessen from Jesus People USA joined us on July 17 to share about his work in the Uptown neighbourhood on the north side of Chicago, Illinois.

A huge praise item: a long-term project has finally been completed. Our church building has been equipped with an elevator so now those who have been finding the stairs a bit difficult will be able to get to the basement easily and with dignity. Hallalujah! A ribbon-cutting and dedication was held on Sunday, July 24. Thanks to the men who devoted a lot of time to seeing this project through to completion.

Kingdom Rock: Where Kids Stand Strong For God was the theme for VBS week August 7—11. It was an amazing five days with about 20 children attending. Each evening started with a barbecue supper that was a great way to connect with both the parents and the children. The children learned that prayer, family and friends, God’s love, the Bible and trusting God help us to stand strong.

Youth Pastor Kevin and Lee Pauls welcomed a daughter, Lucy Devona, on Aug. 24, a sister for Desmond. Congratulations!

A potluck breakfast was held on Sunday, Sept. 11, to start the fall season. Sunday School resumes on Sept. 18.

Vanderhoof: VCF Reaches Out to Community Through VBS

by Krista Giesbrecht and Shannon Hall

VANDERHOOF, B.C.—Following Jesus, The Light of the World, was our theme for this year’s Vacation Bible School held at our church on July 11-15. We were blessed by 100 kids, ages four to 11, who attended.

Cave Quest was the program we used; it was a great deal of fun for kids and adults alike. Throughout the week we learned how God’s love takes us through dark times in our lives. Thanks to a lot of hard work, our church was amazingly decorated with caves all throughout to have a fun experience.

There were different stations to rotate through daily: singing time, Bible quests, cinema, games, imagination station (always a favourite), and, of course, snack time. Throughout the week lessons taught that Jesus gives us hope, courage, direction, love, and his power.

By the end of the week kids had brought in 500-plus items of non-perishable food items to donate to out local Neighbor Link, which helps those in community who need it.

None of this could have happened without all of the hard work and dedication of 49 volunteers, 13 of which were our youth, who had a heart to serve. “Praise God for volunteers and for the opportunity to reach out into the community to churched and non-churched kids,” said Kim Giesbrecht, VBS committee leader.

Kim works hard year after year to bring this to our community and her effort doesn’t go unnoticed. We are very thankful for a leader with such a big heart for serving God.