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It’s February—a dreary month in much of North America. If you’re a gardener, you’re probably studying seed catalogs and planning to recreate a little piece of Eden in your back yard.

But what about your church’s back yard? What kind of a crop could you grow there this summer?

Picture a crop of kids laughing, learning about God, and having fun. Some of the faces are familiar to you—they’re the kids from your congregation, and you’ve been nurturing them for a long time. Some of the faces are new—they’re kids from your church’s neighborhood. Some of them have never heard of God’s love for them.

Faith Alive has several resources that can help your church plant a crop that really matters this summer.

Walk With Me, Faith Alive’s popular new church school curriculum, offers easy-to-use summer program materials that work great even if your church doesn’t use Walk With Me during the church school year.

Four different summer programs are available (two of them new this year): Dreams and Schemes (based on the Joseph stories); God’s Family in ACTion (based on Acts); Sharable Parables (based on Jesus’ parables); and Rough Waves? Jesus Saves! (based on various water-related Bible stories).

Each book includes five engaging lessons in a small group or large group format. Kids learn and grow through drama, games, music, activities, and more for indoors and outdoors.

In late spring look for another new product from Faith Alive called WWJD Day Camp. This innovative summer program helps kids serve others as they learn how to be more like Jesus. With a mix of community service projects, small and large group time, cooking, crafts, and fun activities, WWJD Day Camp gets kids and leaders asking and answering the life-changing question What Would Jesus Do?

Vacation Bible School (VBS) has shown generations of church members how to reach out to the kids in their community and help them grow in faith. Published by Augsburg Fortress, the publishing ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, VBS is a time-tested summer program that works.

This year’s theme is “Gospel Express.” Kids who love trains (and what kid doesn’t?) are in for a fun journey. An interactive combination of singing, games, worship, art, and video fun keeps active kids engaged as they focus on five different Bible stories.

All summer program materials described here are available from Faith Alive Christian Resources. For more information, call 1-800-333-8300; log on to, or visit the bookstore at 2850 Kalamazoo SE in Grand Rapids, Mich., or 3475 Mainway in Burlington, Ontario.

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