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RESOURCE CENTER AND ARCHIVES

FBC Samson hosts second VBS for area’scomment (0)

September 13, 2007


It has been said that 98 percent of deaf people are not Christians, but at least one Alabama Baptist church has found a way to help change that statistic.

This summer, First Baptist Church, Samson, in Geneva Baptist Association hosted its second Vacation Bible School (VBS) for the deaf and attracted about 50 people — mainly adults — from a 60-mile radius.

“We had two goals: to try to reach the lost deaf in our surrounding area, lead them to Christ and let them know that there’s a church where they can be included,” said Jennifer Totten, VBS coordinator and wife of Pastor Sam Totten. “Our second goal was to allow deaf people from the surrounding area and from other churches to be able to fellowship together.”

To organize the program, Totten worked with First, Samson, member Jerry Pearson, who is deaf and teaches Bible classes for the deaf in four Alabama and Florida Baptist churches.

“At first, when Jennifer asked me about the deaf VBS, I thought I’m not so sure about that,” Pearson said. “I thought VBS was for kids. But then I realized it was a good idea for adults to get to know more about God.”
He believes ministries like this one are very important for the deaf community.

“Here, in Alabama, there are many deaf people who don’t know the Bible and are not saved,” Pearson said. “I think it’s important to try and connect deaf people with the gospel. Most deaf people are not really skilled in reading the Bible. It’s hard for them to understand. But we try and teach them at the Vacation Bible School and make sure to encourage them to get some interest in learning more about the Word of God.”

During the event, VBS attendees also raised money for an International Mission Board deaf ministry in Thailand.
Totten was pleased with the program’s outreach and said she hopes to expand VBS for the deaf in the future.
“We had between 15 and 20 adults last year,” Totten said. “This year, we opened it to youth and children and had two children. We would like to see it get bigger and better each year.” (TAB)

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