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It’s a Gold Rush!

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Kids mine for true gold at Vacation Bible School

By Patty Unruh

Elementary kids grabbed their bandanas and dusted off their boots at Gold Rush Vacation Bible School July 8-12 at Christ the King Community Church. The youngsters discovered the “true gold” of Jesus Christ as they explored claims that Jesus staked about himself.

The VBS was held in the church’s new facility on Highway 46 across from the Gilpin County Fairgrounds. All enjoyed Bible lessons, recreation, crafts, meals, skits, and music in a gold-mining atmosphere.

The week was filled with highlights. The kids helped dramatize Bible stories of Jesus’ power over sickness, nature, sin, and death as they acted out characters of a paralyzed man, the disciples on a stormy sea, and a dead man brought back to life. They learned about Jesus’ claim to be God and discovered prophecies that he fulfilled with his birth, life, death, and resurrection. The kids dug for nuggets of Jesus’ teaching about loving one’s enemies and looking out for others instead of “number one.” They also took in stories of people whose lives were transformed by becoming children of God.

During the first session, the children gathered around a wading pool to pan for gold. “Is it real?” several of the youngsters asked as they found shining chunks of rock in the sand in their pans. Alas, all that glittered was not gold, but rather, spray-painted gravel. It did go nicely in pouches the kids crafted to collect their riches, however.

They burned off steam with rousing games where teams raced to be the first to fill their buckets with water or rubber snakes. They also put together miner’s journals, sang praise songs, memorized Bible verses, and earned “gold” coins which they exchanged for goodies at the VBS candy store. Delicious meals were served each evening, including such kid favorites as “golden” chicken nuggets, mac and cheese, spaghetti, chili, and hearty beef stew.

Skits were enjoyed throughout the week to introduce each day’s lesson point, and “Dakota,” a miner puppet, reinforced the lessons through humor. The kids also feasted on yummy snacks while viewing a video about Old West characters at the close of each session.

Caring for the needs of others was demonstrated as everyone joined in a mission project to fill packets for church members to distribute to homeless people. The kids formed an assembly line to fill ziplock bags with water bottles, granola bars, tissue packets, hand sanitizer, and other needed items.

VBS was made possible by the efforts of many generous and talented volunteers, including several youth helpers: Brian Unruh, Mariah McBrayer, Tori McBrayer, Kasen Lohman, Rachel Josselyn, Jada Gohdes, Lindsey James, Jose Amaya, and Khristine Barr. The youth ran audio-visual equipment, performed skits, served food, designed and constructed backdrops, performed child care for toddlers, and generally herded kids to each activity. Staci McBrayer coordinated the week-long outreach, and a number of adult volunteers led lessons and music and provided food.

A closing program Friday evening concluded the event, with the children performing songs they had learned during the week and receiving certificates and special prizes for participation. The families in attendance enjoyed a meal of grilled hot dogs, burgers, and brats, accompanied by potato salad, beans, and dessert. A Power Point presentation of the week’s activities followed the dinner and performance.

Christ the King Community Church is non-denominational church and has services on Sundays at 10:30 a.m.

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