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UPDATED: May 2, 2020

Lifeway is releasing a new podcast episode each week on the 4 VBS strategies. Use the podcast episode link below to access them. 

I have been blown away by the creativity of churches these past couple of months. They have journeyed into the unknown with a fierce passion to continue to stay connected with their communities and bring them valuable content and resources. They have all tapped into the creativity of our creator to think outside the box, learn new skills and change the way we thought of "church". 

The WHY hasn't changed but the HOW has. And that's the same for VBS. 

VBS is a source of joy, fun and lifelong memories. It is a time where kids and parents from our neighbourhoods come to the church for the first time because of the recommendation of a friend; where the Gospel is shared to those that have never heard it. VBS is a place where kids encounter God; where they hear about His unfailing, neverending, relentless love for them. It is a monumental moment in the faith of the kids that attend. 

We do VBS because it changes lives.

Why we do VBS isn't changing but how we are going to reach the destination might have to. 

Lucky for us there are some brilliant minds out there that are here to help us out. To strategies with us on some ways we can think differently about doing VBS. We don't know what gatherings are going to look like in a few months but we know that we still can do VBS. 

LifeWay has put together an ebook that gives 4 VBS strategies for this summer. They are:

  1. Traditional VBS - do it like you always have (maybe pushing the date back)
  2. Neighbourhood VBS - have families from your church host a VBS in their backyard (or front yard) with a few other families
  3. Alternate VBS - switch up the schedule: do VBS one week in the evening for 5 weeks, or have grades k-2 in the morning and 3-5 in the afternoon, or have a back to school weekend VBS.
  4. VBS at Home - have virtual content available and give parents "VBS kits" to successfully set them up to lead it themselves.

You can view their post and download their ebook, which goes into detail on these 4 strategies HERE.

They also have a great podcast episode where they discuss this as well. 

Many VBS curriculum providers are doing everything they can to help churches successfully pivot their VBS.

Orange VBS has added everything you need to make VBS work in homes. They hosted a webinar outlining what they are doing and give some amazing ideas on how you can implement them. 

GO! Curriculum has designed "a quarantine friendly VBS" that can be done as a 3-day backyard (or virtual) VBS. It is pretty economical for what you get and has been field testing by a family in the BCYD. 

Vanessa Myers had the incredible idea of "Summer Bible Bucket". Buckets filled with bible-based summer activities that you could make for families. Check them out HERE

And if you speak the language of FREE then I would suggest you check out Grow Curriculum's VBS. This is the first year that they have produced a VBS but if it is anything like their curriculum you will love it. and with using LifeWays strategies guide you can adapt it to fit your situation. 



How much work do parents want to put into leading their kids through a VBS? They have already been homeschooling their kids for the last 2 months. Can you make it simple enough for a parent to leave for the kids to do?

If you are able to meet in small gatherings are you still able to maintain physical distancing? How will you run games like that? Will it increase anxiety trying to keep kids apart?

How will your VBS reach those that don't already attend your church? Can families get an extra "Summer Bible Bucket" to give to a neighbour?

If you were thinking of cancelling your VBS this year why not take a look at these alternate options and see who you could still bring a fun-filled, God-experiencing VBS to your community.  Use this season to innovate on the HOW because your WHY is still there. 



cover photo by Myles Tan on Unsplash