07 May Carnival in Pixley, Calif.
During the Easter holiday, Pixley UB looked for a way to reach out to neighborhood families. Pastor Rodney Bittick writes, “Originally we considered running a three-day VBS on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. But knowing that our small number of workers could be easily overwhelmed by a daily increasing volume of children, we decided to try a more modest one-day carnival-type event. Our goal was two-fold: to establish a connection between the church and its largely Hispanic neighbors, and to get scriptures and Christian materials into the homes.
“Setting aside the same three days, we set to work on Monday making take-home bags. We made bags for children and adults in both Spanish and English. They contained Scripture portions and tracts as well as treats and other prizes.
“On Tuesday, we canvassed the homes in the immediate neighborhood of the church, passing out flyers and inviting them to the party. We decided to call it √îFiesta de Vida’ (Festival of Life).
“Wednesday was party day! The church parking lot was decorated with colorful signs (in Spanish) and helium balloons. Activities included games, coloring pages, and a flannel graph story telling of Jesus’ crucifixion, death and resurrection. Hot dogs and sodas were served and the party ended with the breaking of a pi‚Äìata. The party ended at noon, and each person present was given a gift bag.
“In all, about 35 children and approximately 17 adults attended. Most of the grown-ups and many of the smaller children spoke only Spanish.”