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  • Writer's pictureKendall Carroll

Discovery on Adventure Island (VBS 2023)

Updated: Jul 16, 2023

Note: We are giving our volunteers as much time as possible to upload photos, but the link to see all of them will be available as soon as possible.

This year, our Vacation Bible School theme was “Discovery on Adventure Island,” which meant our Explorers were heading out to Adventure Island to help the Lighthouse Keeper, Ms. Jenny, and Beacon the Puffin restore the island’s magic and locate the missing Guiding Lights. These are the four lanterns that represent different aspects of God that we are meant to shine out to others: love, trust, joy, and hope.

Our mission project this year is to collect money and food for the MUMC Food Pantry! To learn more, click here. The goal was to raise $450, and in total we raised $1,138.25! People also donated a whole lot of food.

If you would like to review a photo album with all photos, click here! But below are some of the highlights. They are in slideshows, so click the arrows to see everything.

Creating the Island

This year, we had the task of turning Manchaca UMC into Adventure Island, the magical land where the Explorers are learning to shine God's light.

Arise! Shine with Love!

Day 1 was about finding the Light of Love. Explorers studied the story of Creation (as told in Genesis 1:1-2:9). They learned what it means to shine God’s love to others and to creation. In our Bible Adventure, we got to visit Beacon's nest, where we found the first lantern. In our Research Station (science), we made rainbows with paper towels. In Island Crafts, we made little lighthouses and leaf prints.

Arise! Shine with Trust!

Day 2 was about finding the Light of Trust. This day’s story was Moses and the Burning Bush (Exodus 3:1-20). The Explorers learned what it means to trust in God, even in times when it seems scary. In Bible Adventure, the Explorers learned about the Adventure Island Lighthouse, where they found the second lantern. In art, they got to make their own lanterns out of saltine cracker boxes. In science, they made lava lamps and learned about hydrophobic materials. In Missions, the Explorers got to take a tour of the Food Pantry facilities, and they made cards to accompany the bags.

Arise! Shine with Joy!

Day 3 was about finding the Light of Joy. Today it wasn’t just the Explorers that were looking for missing objects: our Bible story was The Lost Parables, which tells the story of three missing things: a coin, a sheep, and a son (Luke 15). Explorers reflected on what it means to celebrate in times of joy. In games, the children got to play with a parachute. In science, Explorers attempted to turn on lightbulbs using lemons and used a CD and a magnet to make a functional compass. In art, they made picture frames and treasure boxes.

Arise! Shine with Hope! Day 4 was about finding the Light of Hope. We used the story of Jesus’ resurrection (John 20:1-18) to consider what it means to have hope, even when things seem scary or uncertain. In art, we made shiny crosses. In science, we learned about how light functions using hand-held lasers and prisms. We also got to watch a volcanic explosion! In missions, we learned what goes into each donation bag,

Throughout the week, the explorers had been studying Adventure Island and the Bible stories in order to find four "Guiding Lights," which are four lanterns that power Adventure Island's magic. When they learn how to shine God's light, the lantern lights up! Once all four lanterns were back in their rightful place by the Lighthouse, the Lighthouse turned on!

We all -- the Explorers and the volunteers -- has such a smooth and fun experience at VBS this week. We're so grateful for your support, whether you were a participant, a volunteer, or a supporting church member. And we can't wait to see you next year when we head out to Camp Firelight, where Campers will learn how to face their fears with God on their side.

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