Episode 430

A Church’s Faith Amidst Hurricane Destruction, Senior Adult Church Holds VBS for Kids & Boring Sermons

Sep 5, 2023

Hurricane Idalia’s strong winds may have toppled the steeple on Lakeside Baptist Church in Perry, but the storm did nothing to topple the faith of Lakeside members. Green Valley Baptist Church, located in a senior adult community 30 minutes south of Tucson, Arizone and next door to Sahuarita, a newer community filled with young families, VBS is the event of the summer. And, every pastor preaches a boring sermon from time to time. What do you do if that’s your pastor?

Transcript

Hurricane Idalia’s strong winds may have toppled the steeple on Lakeside Baptist Church in Perry, but the storm did nothing to topple the faith of Lakeside members. Pastor Christopher Arnold’s response was a simple three words, “We’re extremely blessed.”

The pastor explained that the church is located in a logging community. Many church members and residents own chainsaws, skidders, loaders and tractors. Within an hour of the storm’s onslaught, neighbors were working side by side – cutting fallen trees and hauling debris. By afternoon almost every road was opened for travel, he said.
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Why would a senior adult church with no children’s ministry hold vacation Bible school at the church? And how could they possibly do it successfully and even bless other churches year after year?

For Green Valley Baptist Church, located in a senior adult community 30 minutes south of Tucson, Arizone and next door to Sahuarita, a newer community filled with young families, VBS is the event of the summer.

The church has made a commitment to serve their community by hosting the event for summertime tradition for decades.

Not only is it an all hands on board ministry for Green Valley, but they ask for partners from other nearby churches to help them. This summer they hosted 155 children for the event and saw a number of them place their faith in Jesus Christ.

The summer event is so well known in the community, church leaders say parents start calling in March and April to get the VBS date so they can make sure to be in town when it happens.
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Good News for Today is made possible through our friends at The Voice of the Martyrs, a nonprofit organization that serves persecuted Christians around the world. Founded in 1967 by Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, VOM is dedicated to inspiring believers to deepen their commitment to Christ and to fulfill His Great Commission — no matter the cost. Find out more and sign up for their free monthly magazine at vom.org/goodnews.
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Every pastor preaches a boring sermon from time to time.

What do you do if that’s your pastor?

In the Baptist Press Toolbox, longtime pastor Joe McKeever encourages church members to be gracious. He offers some suggestions:

First, he says you could use the time to pray for your pastor. Instead of thinking critical or negative thoughts, pray the Lord would use him in ministry and help him as he studies and prepares to preach.

Second, thank God that his boring sermons is not the norm. Thank the Lord you’re in a church where the sermon is typically helpful, biblical and holds your attention. McKeever also offers a word if you end up talking to the pastor after the service. He says seasoned pastors can read the room and know when folks are struggling to stay with them.

Instead of pointing out the obvious, find an area of ministry the pastor is doing well in and encourage them in the work.

You can read the full piece and learn more about our daily emails at Baptist Press.com.

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