By Doug Hamilton, special guest writer
Brother Doug is the team coordinator for the
Jamaica Mission Trips
The Jamaica Mission Team traveled to Grange Hill on April 6th and stayed until April 13th. The Team consisted on Sophia Agyepong, Grace Baah, Rick Shumpert and Doug Hamilton. The Team taught a Vacation Bible School for the children during their Spring Break from school. Since there were only four on the Team this year, the church in Grange Hill was asked to supply a teacher each day for the Teens. The ladies handled the young children. Sophia taught the Pre-school while Grace taught the 1st and 2nd Graders. Rick taught the 3rd & 4th Graders, and I taught the 5th and 6th Graders. The number of students averaged 54 in attendance during the V.B.S.
As a guide, the Team used a V.B.S. series called A Backyard Adventure – Exploring God’s Word that was published by Lambert Book House. The first lesson on Tuesday was entitled “Explore” and subtitled “The Bible, God’s Book” followed by “Discover – God’s Love for Us” on Wednesday and “Follow – Jesus, God’s Son” on Thursday. On Friday the Team doubled up on the lessons since it was the last day of the V.B.S. and we still had two lessons to go in the series. So we taught the children “Know – Jesus, Our Friend” and “Learn – God’s Plan of Salvation”.
Following lunch each day, the Team conducted a question period called “Bible Feud”. Two students from each class, selected by their teacher, would occupy chairs set up at the front of the church building. The students were paired off with their classmate into teams called ‘Team A” and “Team B”. Counter call bells were available for the students to ring in. A question from the day’s lesson was asked and the first student to ring in was allowed to answer the question. If they answered wrong, then the other student was allowed a chance to answer the question. If both got the answer wrong, the question was asked to the audience. One point was given to a correct answer by Team A or Team B. The team scoring the most points won a blue 1st place ribbon and the other team a red 2nd place ribbon. The questions were easy and asked to reinforce the lesson taught that day. Thanks to Rick who kept score and assisted each day.
Following the contest on Friday, an ice cream social was held by the church for the children. Great fun was had by all.
On Saturday, the Team traveled to Nigril on the very western tip of Jamaica for a little relaxation. There the Team sampled the island delicacy – jerk chicken – at a beach and visited Rick’s place on the island also known as Rick’s Cafe were the team was entertained by a high diver. The Team also visited a permanent flea market for Jamaican souvenirs.
On Sunday morning, the Team heard George Medley, the minister at Grange Hill, teach the Bible School lesson and preach a lesson from God’s Word during the worship hour. His message was from Roman 8:37 on being more than conquerors through Christ and the message was well prepared and delivered. Sunday evening was a special occasion. It was a tribute to Parris and Bradford Holt of Jasper, GA who gave of their time and money to establish the churches in the towns of Amity and Grange Hill. Richard Nepaul, a Jamaican, member of the Amity church, and a graduate of Freed-Hardeman, was the M.C. of the event and did a great job. Members who knew Parris and Brad were asked to relay their remembrances of this couple.
The Mission Team then traveled home the next day and thanks the saints who assemble at Macland Road for their support and prayers. We also want to thank the Macland Road elders for the opportunity to make this trip on the behalf of the church. The Team also wants to thank George for keeping us safe and driving the van to and from the airport in Jamaica. We could not have made it without him. Doug