Joined in the Spirit: VBS partnership builds community

The lower level of St. Ann is undergoing a transformation. Hours from now, it will be the African Serengeti, known for its prides of magnificent lions and abundant large predators.

This is vacation bible school 2019: Roar, where life is wild and God is good. Nearly 200 children and adults will be prowling our campus, taking part in activities that will help them encounter Jesus in a way that feels real and memorable.  The props and scenes that will change Launch classrooms into African vistas were born of a fledgling partnership between St. Ann and a Decatur church called Family Praise Chapel.

Once our VBS wraps up Friday, the sets, which otherwise would have been discarded, will live on in Decatur. The partnership that started last year, blossomed this summer into more than just handing off supplies, said Jackie Kmet, VBS coordinator. Volunteers from Family Praise Chapel came to St. Ann’s to create the environments.

“Our rapport was instant and authentic,” she said. “We had an awesome time working together, learning about one another and sharing tips on how to minister to the families in our parishes.”

Launch leaders are making bigger plans for next summer, inviting other churches, including the Episcopal Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, to get in on the action. Kmet said we could have up to five churches from all faith backgrounds collaborating on VBS next year.

“Our mission in offering VBS is to reach the hearts of our children,” she said, “just as Our Lady of La Salette did.”

To get involved with Launch or VBS, email Jackie Kmet.

pictured: Volunteers from two churches join together to create scenes for VBS.


The Catholic Church of St. Ann is a La Salette parish family dedicated to reconciliation through worship, word, works and sacrament.

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