Four Texas youth groups gave up a planned day of laser tag and sightseeing to provide a multicultural vacation Bible school (VBS) and carnival in an Austin, Texas, neighborhood.
A sign welcoming neighborhood kids to a carnival.
The Serve Our City carnival and VBS was planned by The Springs Community Church, a ministry partnership with Christian Reformed Home Missions in Austin.
The youth groups were from The Lord's Church and Sunrise Community CRC, both in Austin, Stephenville (Texas) CRC, and Hope CRC in Houston. Caucasian, Hispanic, and Korean teens worked together to make the carnival a success.
The VBS program attracted more than double the number of children expected; by the second day the budget was stretched.
“After Tuesday we realized this could get really big. We weren’t expecting [that],” explained Richard Villarreal, pastor at The Springs.
So instead of playing laser tag on Wednesday, the teens stayed on at the VBS, donating the money they would have spent to the program. They took an offering to provide additional funds and called one of the home churches to raise even more money. Within 30 minutes, the young people had raised $800.
“We were talking about cutting back on things, but then we decided, why cut back? We want them to have the full experience. We decided it would be better if we just made the sacrifice ourselves,” said Bryanna Molina of Hope CRC.
“God was just pouring out his provision,” said Villarreal.