Christian Retailing

NEWSLETTERS Current Issue Concordia takes stand against VBS' 'entertainment machine'
Concordia takes stand against VBS' 'entertainment machine' PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 03 December 2012 10:00 AM EST

Concordia Publishing House is calling on Vacation Bible School (VBS) publishers to make the gospel—not entertainment—central to their VBS programs.

"Our stand is against Vacation Bible School programs that confuse children with images and characters that are unrealistic and too similar to cartoons on TV and in the movies—where is the Christian focus?" said Emily Barlean, senior public relations specialist.

Acknowledging that VBS themes may use cartoonish figures or themes to "hook" children and get them interested in participating in a church VBS program, a company statement observed that "the steady transformation of VBS programs into full-on entertainment machines has created a rather distressing situation.

"Instead of being used to share the Word of the Lord, VBS is being used to babysit and cure boredom—and many children are leaving VBS more confused than ever as to who and what is real and who and what are just characters and stories."

Laying the blame at the feet of publishers, parents and churches alike, Concordia, publisher for The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS), has spent three years refocusing its VBS brand and creating programming that remains faithful to the gospel message and the Scriptures as a whole. The publisher calls this renewed focus "VBS with Purpose."

"After many years of trying to mold our VBS programs after what was considered fun and popular, we decided that we'd had enough," said Pam Nummela, Concordia's VBS editor, who is also a director of Christian education and a 30-year veteran leader of VBS programs.

Concordia's VBS curricula will be changing significantly as a result. Stores and churches will see the publisher's VBS programs will no longer be set in locations that cannot be found in the Bible, stories will no longer feature characters outside of the Bible, all artwork will be realistic, and "wise-cracking animals" will not be the spokesmen for Concordia VBS themes.

"Kids love all kinds of art, but that does not mean all art is best for presenting Bible stories," said Gail Pawlitz, a childhood education expert. "During the early childhood years when children sort out for themselves what is real from what is not real, realistic images for Bible stories trump others because they communicate the idea that if 'it looks real, it is real.' "

Retailers can click here to learn more about Concordia's 2013 program, Tell It on the Mountain.

 

In this current issue:

NRF survey: Families spending more than ever on Mom

News image

Families this year are ready to splurge on jewelry, flowers,...

READ MORE

Brooklyn Tabernacle’s ‘Pray’ rises to Billboard no. 1

News image

The six-time Grammy award-winning Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir’s new CD titled...

READ MORE

Harvest House Publishers’ title reaches Christy Awards finals

News image

The Amish Blacksmith (Harvest House Publishers), a novel by best-selling...

READ MORE

Bethany House author scores Minnesota Book Award

News image

Bethany House writerJulie Klassen has been presented with a Minnesota...

READ MORE

Amazon introduces shopping app for Apple watch

News image

Amazon customers with an Apple Watch can simply tap the...

READ MORE

2015 Christy Awards finalists announced

News image

The Christy Awards Advisory Board has announced the following finalists...

READ MORE

Christian self-publisher to shut down

News image

CrossBooks, a Christian self-publishing company, has announced it will close...

READ MORE

Christian Small Publishers announce annual awards

News image

Christian Small Publishers Association has announced the winning titles for...

READ MORE

Zondervan set to publish Chuck Colson’s final book

News image

This week, on the third anniversary of the death of...

READ MORE

Thomas Nelson graduation books top big milestone

News image

Bestselling gift books God’s Promises for Graduates and God’s Answers...

READ MORE

Christian music trailblazer Billy Ray Hearn dies at 85

News image

Gospel Music Hall of Fame member and CCM pioneer Billy...

READ MORE

Mardel names new CEO as Mart Green steps down

News image

The Mardel Christian & Education retail chain today announced the...

READ MORE
100%
-
+
0
Show options

a