God truly blessed our prayers, our enthusiastic volunteers, their diligent preparations, and new programs this year. Jason Palmisano helped us develop a great VBS website and online registration with a spreadsheet. Kathy Fagan and Lee Goon did a wonderful job of advertising, printing letters, using graphics, making power point presentations, ads’ in local papers, etc. They also volunteered in the classroom as well. Wendy Keller and Rachel Stenger faithfully served at the registration table for the first three days of VBS. Our enrollment jumped from 34 last year to 54 this year not counting the 5 in cribbery / nursery.
We added the Toddler Group, ages 2 & 3 year olds, who were just adorable. An Adult Seminar on Parenting, led by Pastor Milligan, was introduced this year. The cribbery / nursery were faithfully watched over by Elaine Eaton and Debbie Soukup enabling young parents to volunteer for VBS or attend the seminar. They were assisted by Marilyn Fisher and Lee Goon.
Our new Discovery Class, led by Carol Sweeney and assisted by Lesley Milligan, conducted interesting experiments that enabled each child to have hands on opportunity to see how science happens. Special thanks to Tom Feazell who substituted on Friday.
Sue Milligan, as Telly the Ticket-Taker and Laura Milligan, puppeteer of Godwin, really got each day off to a great start by introducing the song and country of the day plus the memory verse. Barbara Reed and Brien Oswinkle ran the all important sound and video part of the program. Pat Francisco walked miles and shot many pictures of our activities each day. She along with Barbara, who edited for many hours into the night, put together a great slide show of the VBS week which was shown Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
We had two special guests during the week, Linda Karner, missionary to Japan and Rachel Stenger who lived in Mexico when a student. We were so blessed to have them both share their knowledge of those countries with the children. The Telephone Booth, Kangaroo and Japanese painted signs were made by Corey Grunert. Thank you for sharing your talent to help decorate our church for VBS.
We also introduced a Mission Project this year for World Relief. Sharon Mariani made a chart to show the amount of money collected each day for Chicks and Bibles for Pastors from other parts of the world. The display was cute and the children really responded.
The Bible Stories were presented in a variety of ways, with skits, puppets, and narration under the enthusiastic leadership of Magda Warsal (who is recovering from major surgery), Debbie Sisson and JoAnn Beck. The beautiful background scene was painted by Debbie Lemons. She also made the big tree for Zacchaeus and the large decorative arrows with the name of the country. Thanks to the willingness of Pastor Dave Milligan, John Bronakoski, Chuck Holzman, Tedd Stastney, Faith Burgess, Brien Oswinkle, Mary and Bill Englar, Nadim Warsal, and Keith Wawrzyniak for doing their parts to bring the Bible stories to life for the children. A special thanks to Rick Lieberman who did the Day 2 story with his puppet and water trick performed by Laura Milligan.
Tedd Stastney and Heather Daniels braved the extreme heat to lead the children from Toddlers to 5th graders in fun and creative games from other countries and the memory verses. They were flexible and brought the games indoors for the Toddlers on Thursday and on Friday for all the groups. Tom Feazell joined them Wednesday and Bob Fagan filled in for Tedd on Thursday. The children really enjoyed the games.
Our Craft Director, Carol Bronakoski was flexible and very creative as she continued to make more crafts to keep up with the daily increase in enrollment. She also went to the Toddler’s Class to help them with their craft. Carol was assisted by Judy Robinson, Marites Ribakow, and Kathy Fagan plus the teachers and their helpers.
JoAnn Beck was running between two kitchens this week. Her helpers were Mary Englar and Pat Greve. As each class came to snack time, JoAnn had prepared samples of special foods to taste and shared some of the eating habits from the country of the day. She also helped Curt Soukup set up for the shaved ice special event on Wednesday afternoon. What a great cool treat he brought us and the parents!
The creative closing program on Saturday, July 20, 2013 developed by Sue Milligan was informative and fun. The children got to sing the lively songs and interact with Godwin the puppet to explain about the different countries they studied as well as the Bible Stories and memory verses. Then off to the Everywhere Fun Fair!
Food for Saturday’s picnic was also organized by JoAnn Beck. Families bought delightful side dishes to go with the hamburgers and hot dogs, left over from the Strawberry Festival. At the grill were Chuck Holzman and Brien Sweeney. Keith & Sylvia Goodson made refreshing snowballs.
John Bronakoski and many others helped set up canopies, tables, and games. Brien Oswinkle, Michael Kersten, Debbie Sisson, Laura Milligan, Katie Milligan, Lesley Milligan, Lee Goon, and Janna Lieberman supervised the fair games that Rick Lieberman brought to the picnic. He also brought the tickets and prizes to be rewarded. Alison Kersten was our face painting artist. Thanks to Bill Eaton for making the red & white striped booth covers and Forrest Williams for blowing up 50 balloons to make it look more like a fair. We thank God also for a cooling breeze that day.
The teachers diligently decorated their rooms for each country and prepared their lessons to share the salvation plan to each child. Toddler Class – Sharon Mariani with Laura Milligan and Karsyn Lucas; Preschool – Kindergarten Class with Carole Williams, Brien Oswinkle, and Faith Burgess; 1 & 2 Grade Class – Alison Kersten, Diane Insley, and Sara Feazell; 3, 4, & 5 Grade Class- Sandi Magsamen, Lee Goon, Sue Fisher, and Juanita Borgerding. Thank you everyone for your hard work and service unto the Lord. On Sunday morning, Sue Milligan had the church VBS kids sing two songs they learned.
We were all blessed by the opportunity to introduce more children this year to the Gospel Story. May the Holy Spirit continue to work in their lives as they try to love God with their whole heart and their neighbors as themselves.
Striving to serve Him with you,
2013 VBS Director