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The Fruits of the Spirit of VBS

VBS-2015  Galatians 5:22-23: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against things like this.

Vacation Bible School took over campus and the lives of 55 children, 24 volunteers and their families in July. As the week ended I reflected on the significance and impact of such a week, when our community becomes most definitely child centered.

One of the passages that inspired us during our week of feast was Galations 5:22-23, ‘the fruit of the Spirit”. We thought about how fruit grows and how gardeners tend their crops and how we also produce fruit. As we finished the week some of the volunteers reflected on how they used some of those fruits during the week. Here is some of what they said:

Joy: Welcoming new children, working alongside parishioners you wouldn’t normally see. The faces of the children as they helped each other. The excitement about the activities. The wonderful music!

Peace: At the end of each busy morning.

Patience: Something we all need to practice! The children learn it while developing new skills and trying new crafts. We learn it as we explain something, again!

Kindness: Expressing to all children that the world is good, people are good and they themselves are good.

Goodness: Yummy snacks! We show our faith when we share God’s love for us with the children.

Faithfulness: In addition to hard work and preparation we place our faith in God.

Love: New friendships, between the children and for the volunteers as well. God’s love for us passed on in actions.

I know so many of our community supported VBS, with prayer, with supplies and with encouragement. For a week our campus was, noisy and full of life and our volunteers gained as much as the children. . Our VBS service included music, story and prayer and over 20 children as part of our most important feast: the Eucharist. As the children helped set the final table of our week they made the connection that we are fed at the altar and those who had worked with them were reminded of the source of our nourishment.

So what are the fruits of the spirit of VBS?

Community, Friendship, Love, Joy and Blessing.

While we serve the community we are building our own community. While we create space for the children to learn and make friends we do so ourselves. We are blessed by the presence and joy of the children and in welcoming them we are reminded of our purpose as a church – to create spaces where God is encountered – not just by those who visit, but by us as well. May we continue to tend and grow these fruits.

Thank you to everyone who devoted time, energy and resources to Feast at St. James’. The success of VBS is a team effort and all your work is appreciated. For those people who have heard how much fun we have an would like to join in you are welcome to come on board next year, for a day or for the week!

~ Jan Scrutton, Children’s Minister