Sixty-nine percent! That’s a significant amount. That’s the number of parents in the US, according to Lifeway research, who would let their child attend a VBS at someone else’s church IF invited! That number includes people who don’t even attend church themselves on a regular basis!
Nine in 10 adults who went to VBS as a child have positive memories of attending. Even among those who didn’t go as a kid, 61 percent have positive thoughts about the program.
Here’s some more statistics, not as encouraging as the previous. As of 2013, according to Pew Research, only 37 percent of all US Americans attend religious services weekly. Less than half of that number attend Bible believing Christian services. The number continues to drop each year.
These statistics say a lot. In a time when religious institutions are not considered very important to the majority of folks in the United States, a simple children’s program we know as “VBS” is valued! Those statistics say to me that our VBS, the one we’re doing the last week of June, where we’re expecting over 150 kids to attend, can have a significant impact on community.
We had a great Easter Sunday just two weeks ago! Over 400 people attended one of our two services that morning. We had eight new families bring children to the Rise Up with Jesus program. It was an amazing morning! But imagine doing that five days in a row! That’s what VBS is like. Every day, kids and adults alike hear and sing heartfelt worship songs. They listen to stories from the Bible and hear the Gospel message. A Bible verse is repeated more than 20 times throughout the morning. They know they are loved by the attention and care from all the VBS volunteers, some who have worked behind the scenes to create the decorations, prep the crafts or donated the snacks.
And every child who attends VBS has at least one parent. Many who do attend a church somewhere in the South Bay, but also many who don’t. Reaching out to them the week they are here is vital. Reaching out to them AFTER VBS is even more important! Showing families we love them and are concerned for their kids is the most important message each of us need to give. We need to be intentional about this and to be truly effective, this needs to be a total church activity.
There’s lots to do in the weeks and days leading up to VBS. Our small little team has been meeting and working regularly since shortly after Christmas. Now that Easter Sunday is behind us, it’s full steam ahead. They could use some help! Pray and consider how you can be a part of unique opportunity. There’s a table on the patio this morning that can answer your questions!