The following is a repost of Calvary Chapel Frederickburg’s Mission Trip for some great VBS Ideas:

Haiti Day 6 (June 19)

We’re all still healthy. Maybe a little stiff but everyone is holding stead, strong, and motivated. Devotions were a team effort today between Kelly and JT. Kelly led off with a very appropriate Matthew 6:19-24 Treasures in Heaven and observed how trivial some of our stateside concerns are when we consider the big picture. JT focused on John 6:27, 35 and the observation that the people we are providing food to will be hungry a couple of hours later and that the food they really need is the Gospel. Amen brother! Jim taught the Bible Training students multiple chapters of Ezekiel and completed up thru chapter 39. Pastor John taught The Ungrateful Servant to an ever-growing VBS group. The skit was lots of fun. Joel was thrown in jail by the Ungrateful Servant and Alex got the same treatment by the Master (Kelly). Many of the kids listened and many were preoccupied as you can imagine. We decided (yesterday) to make sure we made enough take away bags because we did not want to fall short. We built 244 bags. We ended up having very close to 300 people including adults, and unfortunately, many did not get a take away bag. It’s a good challenge to have, to meet the demand, but next year’s effort will have to consider the likelihood of these larger audiences. We spent the early afternoon finishing off the T-shirts by putting dual-color, hand prints with heart shapes within the palms. The T-shirts have our VBS key verse, Romans 5:8 printed in Haitian Creole on them. We finished off all of the shirts in two sessions. Our learning curve was steep and we created several efficiencies to minimize the time–including reducing the size of the work force…! We will most likely be short so pray for peace in the amphitheater and a calmness among us and our friends who come to VBS.  After the T-shirts were completed, we made our way down to the amphitheater for a church service. The Bible Training Students led the worship. They and the Believers who attended were so passionate about their worship! Some of the music was recognizable to most of us, but John recognized them (of course) and when he was introduced to lead the service, he mentioned the songs that he had recognized and they applauded and smiled for each “correct” identification. Man they are friendly. He spoke on 1 Peter 2:4-10 and Jesus as the cornerstone, using the amphitheater’s stone masonry construction as a metaphor for believers. It was really good, as usual. Please don’t slow down on the prayers as you can see there is some adversity in terms of supply and demand.
Locals worshiping at church service Thursday night at ampitheater.
Romans 5:8 “God demonstrates His love!” shirts for kids.
Well over 300 attendees at Thursday VBS!!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Haiti Day 5 (June 18)

Early starts are getting easier. Roosters don’t seem as ridiculous as they did the first couple of nights. The wind seriously howls across the rooftop, where many of us are still sleeping. The four foot diameter windmill that spins at lots-o-revolutions per second about seven feet above our heads seems to be holding. We have considered the carnage potential if it were to eat itself as many of us are within the frag pattern. But, since your prayers have us covered, no worries! Now to more important matters. We met at 0700 for devotions. Pastor John led a short study of Colossians 3 and we prayed that God’s Word and His Love would go out to those we met “along the road”. John finished up Ezekiel thru chapter 24 and Jim took the baton which allowed John to survey the damage the rest of us did while unsupervised! The VBS team made it to the amphitheater in time to rehearse the parable of the day — The Prodigal Son. We decided it would be good to lead the effort off with some worship music as the kids began streaming in around 45 minutes after our advertised start time. We reviewed the lessons and messages from Days 1 and 2 and introduced the scene for the day. The skit was a lot of fun, especially where the Gentile Employer (Jim) sent our prodigal (Joel) into the “pig sty” to work. What a picture of destitution. Luckily for us all, he was able to “come to his senses,” repent, return, and have his relationship reestablished providing us all a valuable lesson of God’s Love. We loaded up the truck and bounced our way to the orphanage. We almost lost Margie out the back but she’s pretty wiley and hung on tight. Upon arrival, the kids came running out of the building to greet us. We retrieved the special needs kids (about 15) and set up for the Lost Sheep skit. Emily did a great job and JT made sure we had some maracas ready to go for all (40-50). As I was sitting on the steps during some singing, one of the little boys, about 3 or 4, poked and prodded my shirt pocket. I pulled out a clean tissue and handed it to him. He was fascinated, wrapped his maraca in it. Hmmm. Ilya set up some cones where he intended to run the Hope House version of a Sprint Cup race with wheel chairs. His adversaries (4 year olds) kept moving the cones but ultimately, Ilya prevailed and the one-on-one races commenced. The was a mixture of joy and maybe a hint of terror–depending on who was pushing/navigating the course. Really, the kids had a great time and although they could not communicate verbally, they could with their eyes and their smiles. It was good. Other orphanage events of interest: Kelly captivated and taught the kids how to love by picking up and cuddling a shy little puppy. The kids had been tormenting it but they really seemed to”get it” as Kelly modeled the love and care. Even Kosnoski was caught holding a Lille child. I think that child may have found a chink in his armor. We arrived back at the compound, had some dinner and went to the amphitheater where the Jesus movie was playing. I saw about 100 men, women, and children watching, even quoting the lines as they came up. Remember, this is an outdoor event running on fairly outdated technology. No complaints. Community. After the movie, several young teens asked if they “could help tomorrow” (with VBS). Oh yeah! You bet you can!
Loving the little ones.
Parachute games with the children at the orphanage. 
Chaos (as can be seen in the blurry picture) when water was being handed out after VBS.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Haiti Day 4 (June 17)

Starting to get into a routine. Everyone up early for devotions and an on-time start for our 0700 meeting. John finished teaching up thru Ezekiel 19 and Emily led the VBS lesson using the Parable of the Lost Sheep. Another small crowd that grew very quickly. Easily 150 and probably closer to 200 including adults and older teens. JT’s craft was a Big Hit with the kids. The Haitian’s are very musically inclined so the maracas were not only appropriate but were held onto tightly and used constantly during song and praise.  In the afternoon, we went to the orphanage. What an eye opener that was! The special-needs kids were heart breaking. I think most of us were trying to swallow the lumps in our throats and trying to move forward with our mission. Many of us went into the Hope House where the special needs kids were and helped to wheel them into the courtyard where they were positioned in a semi-circle to observe the Good Samaritan skit and lesson we had completed for VBS on Monday. Many other orphans were also on hand. Of course there is no difference between an orphan and a non-orphan. Can’t pick ’em out of a crowd or anything. They were just great kids who need a lot of loving. What an incredible experience to think through James’ statement about perfect religion and taking care of widows and orphans. Many just really wanted to be held and wanted extra crafts (hearts symbolizing God’s love). Some of our folks even put the special-needs kids on to a specially designed platform, strapped them in, and gave them a ride as on a swing-but in a reclined positioned. Hard to tell who was enjoying the moment more. After the orphanage we proceeded to the Tent City church for a service. The service was chock full of kids who welcomed us by climbing up on our laps to sit. All in all very well behaved. The worship was passionate. We knew some of the songs based on the music. The message was provided by Big Jim with translator where he was very well received and managed to bring the congregation a little deeper into the Word. It was night when we departed. We all climbed aboard the pickup truck and made our way back for a late dinner. All are still healthy and in good spirits. Mosquitos minimal. Wind is helping. Heat is tolerable. Much to see. Much growth. Much stretching of our comfort zones. The prayers are felt and there have been cases where things could have gone south but the Holy Spirit has intervened and the Gospel has been furthered. Praise be to The Lord, Jesus Christ. Jezi renmen ou!
Passing out lollipops at the orphanage.
Maracas at VBS Day 2
Bible Training Center students.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Haiti Day 3 (June 16)

Who needs an alarm clock?!?. We’ve got our first alarm (Lead Rooster) at about 0430. That alarm alerts the rest of the roosters outside our perimeter and there has to be at least 50. Each one sounds the same! But they seem to wake up between 0430 and 0600 so there is no excuse for tardiness! We hit the ground running. Devotions at about 0700 where Pastor John taught from 1 Peter 1. Pancakes at 0730. No syrup. Syrup is for the weak! Bible student training at 0830 and VBS practice and set up around 0845. Kids started showing up around 0930 and we kicked off shortly thereafter providing a skit of the Good Samaritan and linking it to our VBS theme of “God’s Love” and key verse Romans 5:8. JT provided a craft to help symbolize and solidify the lesson. The kids, teens, and adults enjoyed the skit and participated in the lesson, answering questions and generally having fun. Two locals including one of last year’s graduating Bible students and a missionary from Costa Mesa entertained the group with songs and games. The kids had lots of fun running and jumping in the newly minted concrete amphitheater. Only one casualty-bloody chin. He was repaired and back in working order in no time. After VBS we handed out a boatload of crocs and take-away bags-about 150. As orderly as we’d have liked it, chaos became the word of the hour. But throughout, we served and loved our neighbor. So many kids to hold and play with. Smiles and joy aplenty.  Not long after we wrapped up VBS Day 1, we were on our way to Tent City with dresses and more crocs. A long walk over the lose and rocky terrain. Much like our journey to the church on Sunday. Tent City was quite a scene. It really breaks ones heart to see how and where they live but at the same time lifts one up to see the joy they have and show to each other. Their love for each other especially family, is evident. The Tent City church, where we decided to pass out the dresses, is simply constructed, with a wood frame and a corrugated tin roof. The sides are also wooden to about five feet and chain linked to the roof to allow air to circulate. But the inside is filled with the Love that only Jesus can provide. So many kids with so few personal possessions. After a few words from Pastor John, the kids and parents/guardians/siblings filed to the table where dresses and other clothes were assembled and provided. They moved on to the shoe station where they were fitted and provided crocs-you would not believe what some of these kids had for shoes. Many looked liked they had been worn by about fourteen children prior. Half of their foot might be protruding. Still, nobody complained. It didn’t take long for the word to spread throughout Tent City and pretty soon the orderly file turned into, well how about “barely restrained anticipation”. When it was all said and done, much more was done than said. I think a few pictures tell the story quite well. Hopefully we can get them uploaded. Keep the heat (prayer) coming. This is definitely a “contact sport” and endurance is key. It’s nonstop baby!

Dresses that were made given to the girls in the tent city.

Entering the tent city.

Handing out clothing at the tent city church… a little chaotic.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Haiti Day 1 & 2 (June 14 & 15)

Day 1 – Team arrived safely in Port au Prince. Kudos to the supply and logistics teams, the dressmakers, and all of the support team. What a blessing and smooth operation! Everyone is healthy and in good spirits. Very friendly people. Especially folks at the airport who wanted to help…Pastor Brian McDaniel rescued us and all bags were “carefully” loaded into and onto the inadequate space available in/on the vehicles. We then mounted the bags (yes, the bags!) and made the bumpy and circuitous trek to the compound. Adventure. Tough to keep a low profile. The compound is up in the hills, with a great view of the ocean to the West. Good breeze. Very friendly Haitian Bible Students made us feel welcomed. The team was billeted nicely but many chose to sleep on the roof where a nice cool breeze blew nonstop. Thanks for your prayers and please keep’em coming. 

 Day 2 – Most were up in time for the 7:00am service that started around 8:00am–such is Haitian Standard Time. While Pastor John led worship on the roof, Pastor Brian taught in the courtyard. We then came together and heard a beautiful chorus by some of the locals. They were singing and praising wonderfully. Once complete we were on our way to another church in the area. We were on foot and with escort, and made our way about a mile up hills of rocky roads and alley ways where dwellings were made mostly of cinder block and corrugated tin. Children’s toy cars looked as if they originated from the garbage heap. No wheels. But the children smiled and still had a joy about them. We heard worship as we rounded a corner. Great to hear and somehow very appropriate among the poor surroundings. The Hope of a Nation. We were welcomed to the service and afterward many of last year’s Bible students rekindled friendships with last year’s teammates. We retraced our steps back to the compound, many of us walking hand in hand with a Haitian child, and once back we had lunch, black beans and rice with succulent mango and some other dish that was quite good. We did a little VBS planning and some did a quick trip to the orphanage to help plan for later visits this week. All-in-all a full day. The World Cup is a big deal here as we can hear the radios, the cheers, and the car horns in the near distance. I did a non-scientific survey and found a 50/50 split between Argentina and Brazilian fans (sample size- 6). No clue who is winning. Tomorrow VBS begins and we’re all very excited about whatever God has planned for the kids and adults as well as for the Bible Training Center students to be taught by John and Jim. Feel free to comment and we’ll try to answer any questions you might have. Keep the prayers coming.