Greensboro churches combine school efforts
    August 2 2008 by Bob Burchette, Special to the Recorder

    GREENSBORO — Eight churches that joined forces in mid-June to conduct a successful Vacation Bible School(VBS) are working together for a community-wide "Back To School Community Day'' Saturday, Aug. 16.
    The event will be from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. in a field between Southside Baptist Church and Motel 6, off U.S. 85 on the south side of Greensboro.

    The goal is to attract at least 500 children to the event and provide them bags of school supplies, said Matthew Bowden, youth director at Southside That was approximately the average attendance each night for the VBS, according to Patrick Fuller,  Southside pastor.

    Pastors of the eight churches reaped great spiritual rewards and established fellowship during that program, Fuller said. So they decided to work together again for the back-to-school block party.

    "We found out we can get a lot more accomplished working together than competing for the attention of the children in our neighborhoods," Fuller said.

    Three black congregations and five predominately white churches sponsored the VBS at Southside. Seven are Baptist churches, and one is an Assembly of God.

    Each church has taken responsibility for getting various supplies, and for helping invite children to play games, and enjoy popcorn, cotton candy, ice cones, refreshments and play game, Bowden said. The area is being blanketed with flyers inviting participation. Mail invitations are being sent to those who participated in the Bible school.

    Success of VBS has cleared a lot of hurdles for all of the churches involved, according to Rodney Mitchell, pastor of Rocky Knoll Baptist Church. 

    "The most exciting thing about it was that it showed what could be done by working together," he said. "It was an opportunity to see what can take place when churches get together in a common purpose for the Lord. I looked out across the children gathered each night, and it was like a glimpse of heaven with the diversity of people there — white, black and Asian."

    The churches also included Groometown Baptist, Christian Fellowship Missionary Baptist, Water of Life Community, Whosoeverwill Baptist, Pinecroft Baptist and Central Assembly of God.

    The hand-in-hand work among these churches won't end with the back-to-school party. "We're now talking about doing a Christmas program together," Bowden said.
    (EDITOR'S NOTE — Burchette, a retired editor/writer for the
    Greensboro News & Record, can be reached at
    8/2/2008 4:51:00 AM by Bob Burchette, Special to the Recorder | with 0 comments

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