by Geeta Menezes
BORIVLI-MUMBAI, NOVEMBER 19, 2013: This year, the Vacation Bible Joy Program for the Sunday school students of St John Bosco Parish, Borivli was from 6th November to 14th November 2013. The students were divided into three categories – the Sub Juniors comprising of children from Stds I to IV, the Juniors comprising of children from Stds V to VII, and the Seniors comprising of children from Stds VIII and Std IX. The program was conducted by the Salesian Cooperators along with Sisters of St Paul.
The program revolved around the theme, 'Through the doors of faith'. The Word of God opened doors to different lands making it seem like a very exciting adventure for the children. Through the word of God, the children journeyed to different lands mentioned in the Bible. They travelled first to Eden – the Garden of Paradise marveling the creation of universe, moved on to Egypt learning about how Israelites were freed from slavery, on to Mount Sinai where God handed over the ten commandments, then on to Moab where Moses died and the Israelites got a new leader in Joshua. Then the children travelled to lands mentioned in the New Testament – to Jericho and finally to Jerusalem, where they learnt about the church and the celebration of the Eucharist. The children were also taught to apply what they learnt in the present context, in their lives today. The students also engaged in fun activities like colouring pictures, joining the dots, finding ways through the maze, crossword puzzles, jumbled words, choosing the right word, action songs, etc. There was also a concept of memory verse wherein each day the students were taught a verse which they had to learn by heart.
The teachers performed their tasks avidly and diligently. They showed immense dedication in studying the material, preparing the lessons, checking the activities, teaching hymns and songs, etc.The teachers Sr Scandya, Mrs Blanche Furtado and Mrs Carmen Nunes for the Sub Juniors class, Mrs Anita D'Souza and Mrs Lucy Aranha for Juniors and Sr Kabita and Mrs Claudina Pinto for the Seniors class were appreciated for travelling with the children in their journey of faith.
14th November 2013, which was also Children's Day, was the last day of the program. Parents of the students were invited to gather in the Audio-visual hall for the closing ceremony. The closing ceremony began at 6 pm in the AV hall. Geeta Menezes, the Co-ordinator of the Salesian Cooperators, welcomed the parents and with the aid of a power point presentation explained to them about the VBJ course. The children then showcased through songs and skits what they had learnt during the VBJ week.
The children from the junior category first sang a welcome song. The smaller children of the juniors group captivated hearts with a small skit on faith, charity, love and hope and an action song, "My life is in you Lord". The seniors came next and performed a skit and an action song. The juniors finally took the stage and enacted a skit on never losing hope and having trust and faith in God. They finally concluded with an action song. Fr Aloysius Furtado, Parish Priest, then addressed the gathering.
Students who performed well in the activities were awarded by Fr Aloysius. Teachers were presented with small mementos for their efforts. The ceremony concluded with vote of thanks.
"I will open a door that no man can shut." Revelations 3: 8.