Returning to In-Person Vacation Bible School

In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic kept church buildings closed. Many began reimagining ministry to continue to serve their communities.

Vacation Bible School is one of those ministries. As in-person contact was limited, many churches creatively worked to remain connected with children and youth. Considering all the changes young people were experiencing, including learning from home, churches prioritized engaging youth to teach them about the love of Jesus Christ.

Scioto Ridge United Methodist Church is offering in-person vacation Bible school, with no virtual option. The decision was made after careful thought. Kari Blackburn, director of children’s ministry, said, “This year, we have a morning, afternoon and evening session.” This helps with social distancing.” Last year, their program was all virtual with supplies for children to take home and learn while connecting daily with their class and leader using Zoom meetings.

“We’re going all in with the in-person VBS to make it what we want,” Blackburn said. “It is important to know our limitations. We can’t do both in-person and virtual.”

The gift of 2020 was the ability to reimagining ministry. “After doing the same thing year after year, there was freedom in saying, ‘let’s rethink that,’” Blackburn added.

For many families, decisions about how to spend their summer hinges on vaccination, whether to wear a mask and taking family vacations. Knowing this, Scioto Ridge is prepared to receive fewer children participating in VBS this year. It is important that parents are empowered to make the best decisions for their kids,” Blackburn said. “We are still here to teach kids about Jesus.”

We want to hear from you. Please share with us how you are offering vacation Bible school.

Amy Graham, Communications Specialist