Memories of Vacation Bible School

Memories of Vacation Bible School

The visual, sounds, physical contact, aromas, odors, and even flavors that on occasion we taste upon our tongue can roll back the pages of time without the opening of a book. Obviously, we take photographs, often organizing them into albums, to preserve and reinforce our memories. A familiar song, unexpected, all but forgotten and obscured by time, may carry us back to the days of our youth. An experiential learner myself, running my fingers across the texture of practically anything directly linked with the past makes history all the more tangible.

Each year in late spring, as I prepare for my first excursion to my favorite public swimming hole, I retrieve my swimwear. Washed, hung up to dry, and eventually stashed away for months, my swim t-shirts retain the scent of sunscreen from the previous summer. Often as I approach the gate, on my first trip to the pool, a northwest wind may greet me with a whiff of chlorine. Soon I will be reunited with old friends-regular patrons who frequent the pool and returning staff.

After closing time at the pool a few years ago, I drove aimlessly towards home. Overtaken with a sense of sadness, as one poet, his name lost to time, wrote “and open as the waves of ocean come surging into the shore; sweep ore my soul the memories of the days that come no more“. My own mind swept over by childhood memories of Vacation Bible School (VBS), I swung by the grocery store to pick up a package of Duplex Cookies.

Many years ago, while we were at outside at play, VBS volunteers would arrange cookies on a napkin next to a paper cup filled with punch on a table in front of each child’s seat. Duplex Cookies were a staple. While there in the cookie aisle, I found the inspiration for this column.

The topic, VBS, is indirectly, at best, related to food. Yet it is all about food, but not for the body. Most parents, hopefully, are aware of the importance of childhood nutrition. Nutrients found within wholesome foods are essential building blocks of strong healthy bodies. In addition to the body, both the mind and the spirit of youth must be nourished.

For generations of American children, VBS has played an important role. Lessons learned through VBS activities can last a lifetime. Decisions made as a result can extend into eternity.

VBS offered me the opportunity to be in a drama. (I still have the cardboard sandals that I made to go with my costume.) VBS also gave me the opportunity to participate in the publication of a newspaper as well as numerous arts and crafts activities. All were effective learning strategies for atypical learners such as I. The small pupil teacher ratio was also an important factor for me. Studies of public schools that compare the impact of pupil teacher ratios on academic achievement, cited to refute the importance of low pupil teacher ratio, likely do not take into consideration that some teachers would teach five children as though they were teaching to a class of thirty or more. Specifically, some teachers are not particularly interactive with pupils regardless of class size.

VBS is more important today than ever. As a result of a string of decisions made by the Warren Court, prayer and Bible reading are no longer a part of the experience of many public-school students. (A note for younger readers: The Warren Court refers to the time the time frame in which Earl Warren sat as Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.) Dwight David Eisenhower, who appointed him to the Supreme Court, acknowledged publicly that he considered appointing Warren to the Supreme Court to be the worst decision of his presidency.

Years later, the so called “balanced calendar”, a euphemism for year-round school, is not only a threat to family time, essential unstructured playtime with peers, and summer camp, but also to Vacation Bible School, at a time when VBS is more critical than ever as a factor in the education and development of children and youth.

In an 1888 handbook for parents, Salvation Army founder, William Booth, wrote “In all educational effort, keep constantly before you the end you have in view, that is, to make your children Saints and Soldiers of Christ.”

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Thursday, October 25, 2018 - 07:30
Area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders

"We invite all area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders to come together on the last Thursday of each month at Hardee's at 7:30 am. This is to be a time of fellowship, prayer, and discussion about how we as a community of Faith can work together to have a positive impact on our county. All are welcome!" For more information please contact Kathy Chesney at 865-566-3289.

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Thursday, October 25, 2018 - 18:00
UNION COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION

REGULAR WORKSHOP UNION COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION THURSDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2018 6:00 p.m. Union County High School

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1. Discuss School Trips

2. Budget Amendments and Transfers/Director’s Monthly Report—Ann Dyer

3. Discuss TSBA Recommended Changes to Board Policy (Due for Approval on Second Reading in October, 2018): School Bus Seat Restraint Systems —Lenny Holt

4. Discuss Capital Projects—Dr. Carter

5. Discuss Contracts—Lenny Holt

6. Discuss Teacher Tenure—Dr. Carter

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Glenn Thomas Kitts, age 91, of Knoxville passed away on Thursday, October 18, 2018. He Served his County well as a United States Marine during World War II era. He retired from the Knoxville Transit Lines after 52 years. He coached little league at Fountain City Ball Park for ten plus years. Preceded in death by wife Barbara Jean Kitts; Sons Martin Thomas Kitts and Gary Steven Kitts; grandson T.J. Lewis and Chris Turner; parents Arlie and Jessie Kitts; four brothers; and four sisters.

Kenneth "Kenny" David Coffman

Kenneth “Kenny” David Coffman, age 48 of Luttrell, Tennessee went home to be with the Lord on October 18, 2018. He is preceded in death by his grandparents Maynard & Eva Coffman and Millard & Cora Munsey. He is survived by parents Rev. Donnie and Lola Coffman; brothers Ricky (Sharon) Coffman and Donnie (Sherry) Coffman; nieces Kayla (Jamie) Moore and Danielle (Matt) Tindell; nephews Brandon (Miriah) Coffman and Josh (Mary) Coffman; great nephews Brylan, Wesley, Brentley, Hudson, Branson and Bobby; great nieces Ellis and Emersyn. Also survived by uncles, aunts, cousins, and friends.

Dewey Keck

Dewey (Merl) Keck-age 74 of Corryton, born October 18, 1944 passed away Friday, October 19, 2018 at his home. Preceded in death by parents, George and Mary Keck.

Survivors: wife, Joyce Keck; daughters, Robin Carringer; Doris (Greg) Selvidge; grandchildren, Ashley White, Tiffany Grooms; great-grandchild, Brayden Chaney.

Rueben Scott Holloway

Rueben Scott Holloway-age 55 of Luttrell passed away Wednesday night, October 17, 2018 at Select Specialty Hospital at North Knoxville Medical Center. Preceded in death by parents, Bill and Sarah Holloway; wife Darla Holloway; children, Amber, Willie, Erin and Reanna Holloway.

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Catrina Kailynn Maggard-age 18 of Knoxville passed away Saturday morning, October 13, 2018 at U. T. Medical Center as the result of an automobile accident. She was a graduate of Gibbs High School, 2018 Class. She was a loving daughter and friend, full of life and always had a smile on her face. Preceded in death by grandfather, Frank Maggard; great-grandmother, Grace Lynn.

Deborah Marlene Lynch

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Lowen “Denver” Foust – age 82 of Maynardville, passed away at his home on October 16, 2018, surrounded by his family. He was a Korean War Veteran and served in the United States Navy. He was a member of First Baptist Church of Maynardville.

Glen Wayne Yadon

Glen Wayne Yadon of Luttrell was born on October 29, 1954 and went to be with Jesus on October 15, 2018 peacefully in his sleep. Glen was a member of Nave Hill Missionary Baptist Church. He loved big! He had a heart of gold, never met a stranger and would help anyone that he could.

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