Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group

Peterson Space Observer

It was a jungle in there: Vacation Bible School posts record turnout

put away your cell phones.

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- It could have been the summer heat or the jungle theme in the halls of the Peterson Chapel, but Mollie Raymond turned to 30 teen-agers and asked them to do something that could have caused widespread panic in the teen-aged world: put away your cell phones.

by Monica Mendoza

21st Space Wing Public Affairs staff writer

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — It could have been the summer heat or the jungle theme in the halls of the Peterson Chapel, but Mollie Raymond turned to 30 teen-agers and asked them to do something that could have caused widespread panic in the teen-aged world: put away your cell phones.

“I asked them to be important in the life of a little person,” said Ms. Raymond, co-director of Vacation Bible School on Peterson Air Force Base.

“They have stepped up to the plate in every way,” she said.

This year, 30 teen-agers and 30 adults volunteered to be mentors and helpers at the annual Vacation Bible School on Peterson AFB. Word was out about the quality program as a record number of youth – 150 – signed up for the week-long VBS June 21 to 25 that included crafts, games and lots of fun, said Ms. Raymond.

“It’s a week of fun activities in a safe, faithful environment,” she said. “The idea is to make new friends, and enjoy activities that have been planned by wonderful volunteers.”

Kacie Sandy, 13, and Bella Ivone, 14, volunteered at VBS and were assigned to the craft room. They prepared projects, like wooden birdhouses and pots, for the children to paint. Their volunteer hours count toward their confirmation goals.

“I thought it would be fun,” said Kacie Sandy about why she volunteered.

Trish Mehner, VBS co-director, said kids love VBS because it isn’t at all like school.

“You get to scream. You get to dance. You get to run around and be a kid,” she said. “And what’s more important is you get to see adults doing it too.”

The children and volunteers ended the week with an assembly where they sang and paid tribute to military parents. And then, they kicked back and had some pizza.

“It’s a great community chapel, ministry event,” Ms. Raymond said. “It’s been a real blessing to be part of it.”

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