Mexico (MNN) — Sometimes the simplest answers to a challenge are staring you in the face.
That proved true for MOSES, Inc. After a few years of attempting to teach Vacation Bible School in Mexican churches with limited Spanish abilities, Nancy Halberstadt, a bilingual partners of MOSES, finally suggested that the ministry offer a conference to equip the local church leaders to teach their own VBS.
The rest, as they say, is history. Roughly a decade later, the ministry now comes alongside the local church for an annual training conference for community church leaders, VBS, building ministry, and more. Training sessions provide everything a VBS leader needs, from a theme to songs and crafts. MOSES Vice President Jerome Richards explains that today, “Local people now run that. We just provide the supplies. Typically, there are 300 or 400 people that come from area churches in Ensenada, Mexico.”
After the training, the real work starts. Richards says, “They, in turn, take that same material and go and reproduce it themselves…. And they take it farther south, even to remote islands off of Mexico.”
It also makes sense to come alongside these partnering churches and provide some manpower. An upcoming short-term trip to Mexico takes place July 8-20. “The purpose of the Mexico trip is really equipping the individuals there to go out and repeat what we teach them and what we do.
“Our deadline for early registration is May 1, just around the corner. There are scholarships available.”
Richards says the teams drive to Mexico from Grand Rapids, Michigan. They’ll take as many people as they can get. Hopefully, they’ll have enough to make up as many as 7 or 8 teams that go out to churches each day: one in the morning and one in the afternoon.
More to the point, they’re looking for two types of leaders. “The adult leaders only basically drive and come alongside a student leader that needs some guidance in some issue that has come up. The student leader that goes along goes through the training to be able to, in turn, lead the devotions, lead the work site locations that we’re going to.”
Fee schedules are between the adult ($550) to student leaders ($350), and there is still an early registration discount until May 1.
Trips have three elements: training, practice (Vacation Bible School), and relevance (helping with building or cleanup projects). If you’re not going, Richards says, “There are so many things that you can pray for: just for the awakening. Pray for the churches that in turn go out to spread this Vacation Bible School. They may touch up to 7,000 other individuals.”