Missionaries, seminarians and congregation members in Palmar Arriba, Dominican Republic, planned for about 50 children from the community to attend a week-long vacation Bible school (VBS) last summer. The camp gave children a place to be for a couple of hours during the afternoon heat and featured daily Bible stories, memory work, games, crafts, songs and snacks.
The Rev. Dr. David Preus, who now serves in the LCMS Eurasia region, planned the curriculum and wrote the materials for the VBS. Deaconess Caitlin Ramirez and her husband, Jeancarlos, a seminary student, organized the event; planned the music, games, crafts and snacks; and engaged the church members, seminary students and missionary community.
To the surprise of everyone, on the first day of the VBS, a sea of children flooded the registration tables. There were so many children that an urgent message went out to other local LCMS missionaries requesting their help. Though plans were for 50 children, nearly double that number arrived on the first day. As word of the event spread throughout the community, the number of children increased each successive day until, on the final day, there were 150 children joyfully learning about Jesus. In the final tally, the names of 190 children were on the list of registered attendees.
Since the conclusion of the VBS, follow-up visits to the children and their families have continued. Jana Inglehart, communication specialist for the LCMS Latin America and Caribbean region, said, “We pray that the seeds of the Gospel planted in the hearts of the children will bear much fruit. We thank God for His abundant blessing in the lives of so many precious little ones.”
Posted March 11, 2022