GroupVBS

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by USN2Pulpit, Mar 4, 2004.

  1. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
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    If you're an SBC pastor, is it a sin to use a VBS curriculum other than the LifeWay offering this year?

    We had business meeting last night, and there were a couple of people that were shocked at the suggestion of using the GroupVBS product this year.
     
  2. PastorSBC1303

    PastorSBC1303
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    I don't think it is a sin at all, but from my observation of other VBS materials, I have yet to find any that are better quality than the SBC material. And you will notice that many of the other publications copy some type of the SBC theme or do a similar theme in the next year or two. Why were people shocked at the suggestion to your the SBC material this year?
     
  3. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
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    They have an intense loyalty. LifeWay has put out a product they've learned to trust for many years. I don't blame them.

    Here's my situation. There are 6 SBC churches within a 20 mile radius. All are using LifeWay's "Rickshaw Rally" this year. At least two other local churches of different denomination are using it, too. In our small rural town, it is not unusual for kids to go from one VBS to the next, and we wanted to offer something different. By the time they get to us, they already know (and are by now bored with) the same curriculum they had in the last three churches.
     
  4. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    Group materials are great! I switched our Sunday School over to it this year, and had almost 100% good reports.

    I imagine the problem with Lifeway is the ethnic stereotyping in the theme that some find offensive.
     
  5. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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  6. go2church

    go2church
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    Your not looking very hard! We are using less and less of Lifeway in total. None of the Adult classes use it and only a few of the children's classes are still using it.
     
  7. Greg Linscott

    Greg Linscott
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    IMHO, it never hurts to use a variety of providers (or at least be aware of them, so you're assured your giving the students the best available).

    I would also suggest Regular Baptist Press...

    http://www.rbpstore.org/

    Just to comfort you, when I was in my last two churches (both GARBC), the thought of using anything other than RBP curriculum was met with a similar reaction to what you are experiencing! :D
     
  8. PastorSBC1303

    PastorSBC1303
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    gotochurch.....actually I have looked quite hard, and just because you are using other materials does not make them as good or as well put together as Lifeway material.
     
  9. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
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    I agree (at least with PastorSBC1303) that LifeWay generally puts out a superior product. I did feel that this year at least, the GroupVBS curriculum was at least as good, if not better. Combine that with our opportunity to provide something different to the kids of this small community, and we made our choice.

    This choice does not reflect disapproval of the LifeWay product. I believe having the variety of VBS curriculum in the community will allow all of the churches in the community to be more effective.

    One of the "every year faithful" VBS workers told me last Wednesday that she is always disheartened when an 8-year old tells her "yeah, we already know - we did that at "FBC" and at "2ndBC" before we came here." The faithful workers welcome the change. Those who aren't planning on working are the ones that were astonished at the mere mention of going elsewhere.
     
  10. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    Our Christian bookstore holds a VBS "fair" every January where reps of the different publishers come and bring their materials, and speak briefly on each. It's great fun, and it lets you see what's out there. This year I'm using Gospel Light with the Olympic theme. The sports angle will be a good one for our city kids. Although Group is fantastic, and I use their Faithweaver Sunday School materials. Bottom line - do what's best for your kids and your workers.
     
  11. Karen

    Karen
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    No, not a sin. Sounds like you have good, thought-out reasons.
    Sometimes the resistance comes from wanting to maintain a distinctive identity or cover particular aspects. And you would need to examine a different curriculum even more closely.

    Awana is a great program, for example, and most SBC churches around here use it now. However, it took the place of, instead of supplementing, some things I miss.
    I think the missions programs of my youth (I was a Queen in GA's) and RA's of my kid's youth had some things that many SBC churches are missing now, in spite of the good things they have picked up.

    Karen
     
  12. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
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    We too are using Awana as our children's approach, but we're doing it on Sunday night during the traditional "Discipleship Training." We are planning to use RA/GA on Wednesday night.
     
  13. Trotter

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    USN2Pulpit,

    Our church has been through this same dilemma. Every SBC church in the area is using the same VBS.

    Well, for the past several years, we have purposefully used different VBS material to keep from being a repeat of all the other churches in our area. It has worked pretty good.

    True, LifeWay puts out a superior product. But the quality of a VBS is in the presentation of it by the teachers and leader, not the slickness of the materials.

    A "home-grown" VBS can be just as good, or even better, than a store-bought VBS if the teachers really get into it. The kids are there to have fun, and just happen to learn a little along the way. As long as your people are enthusiastic and involved, almost any VBS material can be a success!

    In Christ,
    Trotter
     
  14. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
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    Well said, trotter.
     
  15. Trotter

    Trotter
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    USN2Pulpit,

    Thank you.

    In Christ,
    Trotter
     
  16. SaggyWoman

    SaggyWoman
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    I USED TO BE IN SHOCK IN my younger days abou tnot using SBC curriculum.

    I still like and use the curriculum for the most part, but there are other curriculums, and when all the churches in the area are doing Rickshaw Rally--enough already! So much for a lifeway Only stance.
     
  17. j_barner2000

    j_barner2000
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    At our church, the policy is to use the Lifeway Material. In fact, I am leading the youth wed night Bible Study and the pastor of ed and the senior pastor insisted upon using the Lifeskills material. Problem with that is that it is geared toward a group of at least 10.

    I have to spend at least 3 hours downsizing above and beyond the normal prep time. I am using the material as a base, but I am taking the kids much deeper into the mechanics of studying the Bible.

    Use what the LORD leads you to use, USN. I know that when I am called to lead a church, I will insist upon providing the best education ministry possible. Lifeway makes a good product, but product is secondary to His annointing of the VBS staff. You and your staff have to be enthused to be about making disciples. Let us know when and we will be sure to keep your VBS in prayer. Or at least my family will.
     

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