Living Shepherd || laramie, Wy
Daniel Kock || Kingdom Workers Volunteer
This summer, in Laramie...
I played softball on a team in town as part of getting in the community (Pastor Pete's primary focus is relational ministry). I got to know a man on the team as we hung out a couple times outside of softball. I eventually learned that he had visited Living Shepherd in the past as he described himself as "kinda Lutheran." Pastor Pete was about to take him and his wife off the prospect list and then was super excited to hear I was building a relationship with the man. Will he come back to visit in the future? We shall see!
We promoted the Summer Bible Camp by going to parks in the area and talking to parents of kids. Noah (a summer intern here) and I had two interesting conversations. In both cases we were able to share a law/gospel presentation. The one man was a follower of the Norse religion. We talked to him for about 30 minutes. We asked him lots of questions and then shared sin/grace with him. We left him church information. This was eye opening to see just how crazy some of the beliefs that are out there. This man seemed to have all the answers (in his mind) and wasn't terribly interested in our talk. He liked to talk so we listened. So many people need to hear the gospel. The other man grew up in a Christian church (I think Pentecostal) but hadn't been to church in over 15 years. He didn't want to bring his child to our VBS because he wanted her to make a decision about attending church when she was older and could understand. We talked about faith in children and about Christianity in general. He had lots of questions for us. It was another interesting conversation and very good experience.
Our Summer Bible Camp was a positive experience. There were 22 for the first day last year and had a few days where they had less than 20 kids in attendance. This year we had 40 or more all five days. All the kids registered were also new kids besides Pastor's three kids. It was awesome to see God bless our VBS!
In follow up of the Summer Bible Camp, we worshiped at a community center in town (where the Bible Camp was held) instead of the normal worship facility. We promoted kids singing VBS songs in service on Sunday and did it at the community center since it's a much bigger facility than their normal facility. We had 60 in attendance that Sunday with several visitors. They have been averaging about 35 during the summer. There were even a few visitors for Sunday school. That was very uplifting to see the Lord bless our efforts.
There are several prospects from the Summer Bible Camp, but one family has been extremely active since that week. This family (wife and four kids) have attended worship and Sunday school following that Sunday. They have also attended both mid-week Bible studies on Tuesday since they attended our camp. They seem to be very interested in our church and it makes the entire VBS worth it if one family would become members.
We also had other interesting conversations in particular one night at a bar in town. There was a young woman and young man (not together) that we interacted with. We talked a lot about religion throughout the night once they found out what we were doing for the summer. Once again we got to answer lots of questions and talk a little sin/grace with them. Pastor Pete focuses mainly on relational ministry, so we were continually trying to get out in the community and just see where conversations would lead. This was an example of a night where that worked and we were able to share some sin/grace with people we would not have had the chance to normally. Will the conversations bear fruit? We don't know but we just plant the seed.
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