St. Luke's United Methodist Church


4851 S. Apopka-Vineland Road
Orlando, FL 32819
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A Note from Lana Stevens-June 16, 2022

Posted on June 16, 2022 at 5:00 pm in .

Dear St. Lukers,

For many of you, Vacation Bible School is synonymous with summer growing up. It might have been your first introduction to Jesus, hearing songs like, “Pharoah, Pharoah,” “Deep and Wide,” and “He’s God the Whole World in His Hands.” Like me, you might remember rotating through activities like Games, Bible Story, and Crafts; chugging Kool-Aid, making graham cracker towers, and learning about missionaries across the globe. And maybe, like me, it is those memories that keep you coming back each year – either to serve or to bring the next generation. I loved introducing my little boys to VBS, because I believe it is another wonderful way to experience God and the church. VBS is God for the senses, as you literally get to “taste and see that the Lord is good.” There is something for every child, and at the core is relationship. The idea that young and old alike can come together to Learn, Live, Love, and Lead together.

This year, our VBS theme is Maker Fun Factory! Starting Monday, June 20, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. kids will be learning that God made them as good and beloved children, God is for them even if they might feel like no one else is, God is always with them, God will always love them, and that God made them for a purpose. Here at St. Luke’s we believe that our purpose is to be change-makers; disciples who live in community in order to create God’s heaven on earth. One way we do that at VBS is through our mission focus each year.

Last year, the kids raised over $1,000 to help fund new waterways in Costa Rica. This year our focus is right here on our backyard, as our kids will learn more about hunger and food insecurity. Working in collaboration with St. Andrews and Maxey Elementary School, we are asking the kids and families to bring in 1-2 specific items each day so that we might help provide a week’s worth of meals to 100 families in our community. If you would like to help, we will have collection containers all week in the Narthex of each worship venue:

Monday – Rice and Beans

Tuesday – Pasta and Pasta Sauce

Wednesday – Peanut Butter and Jelly

Thursday – Canned Chicken and Tuna

Friday – A favorite treat

One thing I love about VBS is seeing the body of Christ in action. It is people giving their gifts and talents to build sets and create props, write scripts, and engage in relationship with children. It is families finding a community that prioritizes Christ’s acceptance, hospitality, service, and love. With over a 100 adult, teen, and preteen volunteers it is an opportunity to foster intergenerational relationships and empower a new generation. It’s giving kids and youth a platform to discover that they have a purpose and were made to change the world. For some children, it may be the first time they have heard that they are good children of God, and that Jesus loves them.

Perhaps you, or your children or grandchildren have attended VBS. Would you consider partnering with us? Maybe you have some time next week and you want to come greet new faces or encourage those serving. Please come, we would love to have you!

If you cannot partner with us in person, we invite you to pray for all those involved this week. Pray for the leaders, the volunteers, and for the 235 kids that will be on campus experiencing VBS.

Pray that we would all experience something new and life-giving.

Pray that we would experience Christ’s love in action and follow His example.

Pray that we would see God all around us and in all we do and say.

Pray that we would all take steps toward being God’s change-makers in the world.

Finally, I invite EVERYONE to attend our special combined worship service on Sunday, June 26 in the Sanctuary at 9:30 a.m.! During the service you will get to experience all that our little brothers and sisters have done during their week at VBS, and will hear how God has been present in their lives. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to celebrate this day with them!

Peace and Joy,

Lana Stevens

St. Luke’s Director of Children’s Ministries

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