He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands
He’s got the whole world in his hands! That was the theme for this year’s Vacation Bible School at St. Valentine! Mrs. Ricotta explained the theme beautifully to the children: God used His hands to create the world…He then used His hands to create our savior, Jesus Christ…Jesus then, with arms wide open on the cross, gave us life everlasting. It’s now up to us to use our hands to spread God’s love, and to carry on the teachings of Jesus…we must help others! We focused on helping others through the Corporal Works of Mercy. The Corporal Works of Mercy are based off of Jesus’ teachings as reflected in the Gospel of Matthew. As a group, we were able to fulfill each part of the Works of Mercy…
Feed the hungry/Give drink to the thirsty: Money was raised through bottle and can returns to purchase an Earth Gift Basket through the Heifer Organization. This humanitarian organization provides seeds, livestock, and instruction to help the hungry, the thirsty, and the less fortunate of the world. We also collected canned goods to donate to our parish food pantry.
Clothe the naked: We collected clothing to donate to the St. Vincent DePaul charity.
Visit the sick: Although we were not able to physically visit the sick of our parish, the children made spiritual bouquet cards for them…filling the cards with prayers to bless those who are sick with hope and healing.
Visit the imprisoned: Although we were not able to physically visit the imprisoned, we did pray for them and for their families…that the Holy Spirit may guide them and bring them peace.
Bury the dead: With the money collected, we were able to make a donation to the church to dedicate a mass to the deceased of our parish.
Shelter the homeless: With the money collected, we were able to make a donation to the Manna Soup Kitchen. Through their meals, they are able to provide a temporary shelter to those who are in need of a place to call home. We also donated money to the Redford Interfaith Organization. The money will help provide necessities to those in our faith community.
We also studied 5 countries: reviewing their maps, their cultures, how they say “hello”, how they say “Jesus loves me”, and a saint or religious figure from that country. Monday, we studied Israel and the life of Jesus. Tuesday, we studied Ireland and St. Patrick. Wednesday, we studied Italy and St. Benedict. Thursday, we studied India and Mother Teresa. On Friday, we studied Argentina and Pope Francis. Each day’s crafts and snacks were reflective of that particular country’s culture. It was fascinating to learn that each country’s citizens are different, but that God loves us all the same. He loves us regardless of citizenship, language, or culture. We are all children of God…God and Jesus truly love each and every one of us!
Father Socorro taught us a valuable quote from Mother Teresa, “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” That summed up this week’s VBS. Was it a perfect program without bumps along the way?…no. But, was it created and fulfilled with great love…absolutely! Our heartfelt thanks to all of the amazing students, helpers, and parents who made this week possible! We had 42 students…most of them were returning students, some who have been with us for these past six years. We were blessed to have 23 helpers! A special thanks to Barb Pogoda, who organized and assisted with all of our craft projects, and to Leslie Benard, who organized and assisted with all of our snack needs. Thank you so much for sharing your time, your talents, and your treasures with our program! Joan and I bid farewell to the VBS program, but we know that next year’s program will successfully carry on the faith and friendship that has been built these past six years!
God is great all the time…all the time, God is great!
In Faith and Friendship,
Amy Davis and Joan Ricotta
We send our heartfelt thank you to Joan Ricotta and Amy Davis! These two women built our VBS program literally from scratch. Because of their dedication St. Valentine can definitely boast our VBS is a complete Catholic program. Without a doubt, they will be missed, as they also retire from teaching Faith Formation.
We wish you both all the very best and know you have a special place in our hearts and the door is always open for you to return! May God continue to bless all that you do.