The Witness

Volume 41, Issue 19

May 10, 2023

Spotlight on Community Outreach:

The VBC Food Pantry

The Vinton Baptist Church Food Pantry has been run by Patsy Crowder for at least 15 years and is staffed by numerous weekly volunteers, including Wayne Sink, Sam Lewis, and Donnie Lawson, as well as others who help out on an as-needed basis. The Food Pantry is currently open Mondays and Thursdays, 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM; we help outside those hours in emergency situations.

When a family contacts VBC for food, we provide at least two boxes of non-perishables, depending on the number of individuals in the household. Prior to COVID, we helped families with food once per year. After COVID began, food insecurity in the Roanoke Valley became an even greater concern due to the closure of businesses and schools. Families large and small were having trouble simply putting food on the table. At that point, VBC began offering the Food Pantry to each household once per month.

While our Food Pantry has always operated on a pick-up basis, last fall we were able to collaborate with Door Dash to offer free delivery within a 10-mile radius; Door Dash absorbed all operational costs of delivery. While we continued to have many families pick up food, Door Dash allowed us to expand our reach to families who don’t have transportation, who live outside the Town of Vinton, and/or who are disabled or have other special situations. Unfortunately, our partnership with Door Dash will end soon, as they will begin to charge for their services this summer and we are simply not able to absorb that cost. By July 1st all Food Pantry participants will be required to pick up their food again.

We continue to offer the Food Pantry on a monthly basis, as food insecurity remains a concern for many families, especially with recent spikes in grocery costs. In the past year, we have been able to serve 220 households with food. Some of those families may have only been helped once during that time; others have received food once every 30 days. With summer months approaching, when children will be home and will not have access to multiple daily meals through the school system, the short-term demand for food is expected to increase. Demand, combined with the high cost of groceries, is affecting our ability to provide food for our neighbors. We have cut our costs through narrowing down the items that we stock, and we have also recently limited the number of boxes that we give out in any given week. These measures are helping, but we’re also asking for your help.

If you are able to contribute funds to the Food Pantry, over and above your regular giving to the general budget, we would very much appreciate your donations. We prefer monetary gifts because our volunteers shop weekly and know where to find the best deals on the items most needed. Gifts should be made to VBC, and please notate "Food Pantry" on them. You are welcome to make a donation in honor or memory of a loved one, and we will notate those honorariums/memorials in The Witness.

Thank you in advance for making it possible for Vinton Baptist to continue this much-needed ministry to our neighbors in the Roanoke Valley. You are the hands and feet of Christ, providing physical nourishment and sustenance to a community in need.

This Sunday, May 14th: Mother's Day

This Sunday is Mother's Day, and we'll be honoring, remembering, and celebrating our mothers this week. We'll also hear from our Steel Drum Band in both services. Travis' sermon this week is "A Nurturer," and the scripture is Ruth 2:17 - 3:1. We will also be celebrating two baptisms at the 11:00 AM service. If you cannot join us in person, tune in through our website or Facebook group page. There will be no evening activities this Sunday.

Youth Choir Mission Tour

It is astounding how quickly time moves along. Just last fall we were discussing mission trip destinations, and now our trip to Niagara Falls is less than a month away. A shocking realization that came this week is we only have one more rehearsal before we leave (May 21 at 5:00 PM). At that last rehearsal, we are going to need parents and youth going on the choir trip to be in attendance. Please pay any remaining balance you owe toward the trip before that day. If only one parent is going with the child, the other parent must assign permission to the one going to take the child across the border. This document must also be notarized. There are pre-worded documents available online (Google search: permission to take a minor over the border) or you can see Chris. All participants must make a copy of your passport/passport card and give to Chris so he can send the group's documents ahead to the border crossing. Our itinerary is as follows:

Saturday, June 3

Depart VBC and Sing at the VA Veterans Center and drive to Pittsburgh, PA

Sunday, June 4

Sing for morning worship at First Baptist Church, Pittsburgh, PA, lunch to follow, and sing for Southwest PA Veterans Home and drive to Erie, PA

Monday, June 5

Clean-up projects for The Community Shelter of Erie, serve lunch and sing for the residents, drive to Buffalo, NY, Evening Chapel Service crafts and games for the Buffalo Women and Children’s Center.

Tuesday, June 6

Cross the border into Canada, drive to Toronto to assist 2 churches with work projects, sing in the afternoon, drive to Niagara Falls, experience the board walk and activities at Clifton Hill, walk down to see the Falls at night.

Wednesday, June 7

Tour and enjoy the Falls attractions, cross back into the U.S. and drive to Slippery Rock, PA

Thursday, June 8

Return to Vinton, VA

Please pray for our safety and well-being as we share and minister in each setting.


Wednesday Nights

Tonight Travis will wrap up his study on Psalms beginning at 6:15 PM, and his focus will be on Psalm 100. Dinner begins at 5:30 PM for those who signed up. After dinner we will also have Youth Missions Group at 6:00 PM and Children's Choirs and Praise Team rehearsal at 6:15 PM. Chancel Choir rehearsal is at 7:30 PM.

Next Wednesday's dinner (May 17th) is meatloaf, spaghetti, mashed potatoes, green beans, salad, bread, and dessert. We will have a Ministry Matters meeting at 6:15 PM in lieu of Adult Bible Study. All other activities will also take place. This will be our last Wednesday of regularly scheduled events until the fall.

JOY Seniors

Those who have signed up for our Christmas in July outing to Wohlfahrt Haus Thursday, July 13th should also make sure that you have paid the $60 fee. Your payment is your reservation. A wait list is now available. Checks can be made to VBC JOY Seniors.

The next JOY Senior Luncheon is May 23rd at noon in the gym. Our menu is chicken salad croissant, pasta salad, tossed salad, dessert, & water. Lunch is $10/person. Our program is First Aid & Fall Prevention by Brian Clingenpeel. Sign up at the JOY Senior table.

Sign-ups are ongoing for our October 17th - 20th trip to Kentucky to visit the Ark Encounter and the Creation Museum, as well as enjoy a riverboat dinner cruise on the Ohio River. You can set up a payment plan if needed (see Mary Kendrick).

PGA Youth Camp

PGA Youth Camp has been scheduled at Camp Alta Mons for July 28th - 30th. The cost is $90 for the weekend. Click here for a registration form.

Preteens Event: Treetop Quest

Preteens, mark your calendars for Treetop Quest on Sunday, May 21st! The cost is $15/student. Plan to meet us at Treetop Quest at 2:45 PM. Sign up by clicking here by May 17th so that we can be sure to have tickets for you. A waiver is also required - click here.

Graduate Bibles

Bibles for our high school seniors are available in the Welcome Center so that you may mark your favorite verse, include words of encouragement, and direct our graduates in their path. Please take a few moments to write in these Bibles and support our graduates through this tradition. Bibles will be awarded May 21st, Graduate Sunday.

Other Graduate Info

Graduate Recognition Sunday is May 21st. If you or someone in your family is graduating from high school or college this year, please email or call the church office at 540-343-7685 to let us know the following: name of graduate, school, any special honors, type of degree, future plans (for example, if/where they will attend college or military service, or what career they are pursuing), and whether they will be able to attend worship May 21st (and which service.) Even if your graduate cannot attend May 21st, we would still like their information so that we can recognize them in The Witness.

Please also note that Vinton Baptist will host the WBHS Baccalaureate at 6:00 PM on May 21st.

Looking Ahead

Please note that on Sunday, June 4th there will be no morning worship services or Sunday School due to the road closures and traffic/congestion associated with the Ironman competition here in our area. Instead, we will worship together at 6:30 PM (please note time correction) on Wednesday, May 31st. Everyone is welcome to join us in the sanctuary that evening if you are able. While we will worship in person May 31st, we will record that service and broadcast it via our website on Sunday morning, June 4th.

Vacation Bible School

This year's VBS theme is STELLAR: Shine Jesus' Light! We will explore space and how out of this world our love for Jesus is!

VBS will look a little different this year. It will take place July 23rd - 27th, 5:30 - 8:00 PM daily. From 5:30 - 6:00 PM, dinner will be offered in the classrooms, delivered by our dinner leaders and helpers. At 6:00 PM we will begin rotations. Each crew will stick together most of the time in their own room for Bible study/story, craft, games, and science experiments. Crews will leave their rooms for rotations in music (led by Chris & Mary Beth) and games/rec, as well as to attend the opening and closing ceremonies. Crews will be divided by grade/age level, and our goal is to stick to 8-12 kids per crew. So we definitely need crew leaders! Crew leaders and helpers will be invited to training sessions at the beginning of the summer to receive decor for your room, lesson plans, and materials that you need.

We will have a preschool experience led by Jessica Brewer that will still go out to games and music, but also operate on their own in a smaller setting.

We will need help with registration, dinner leaders/helpers, crew leaders/helpers, and games & rec leaders/helpers. Please click here to register as a volunteer. If you have a youth who would like to help, feel free to register them as a helper in any area they would like to serve. See Jessie Burgess, Christina Epperly, or Whitney Russell with questions.

NOTE: The above link can also be used to register your child(ren) for VBS now!

Jean M. Thurman

Harmony Independent Living #61

4428 Pheasant Ridge Road

Roanoke VA 24014

Happy Birthday!

Congratulations to two special ladies:

  • Marie Wheeler, who celebrates her 90th birthday today (Marie's address is 1838 W. Ruritan Road, Roanoke VA 24012)
  • Bernice King, who celebrates her 94th birthday tomorrow (Bernice's address is 613 Maplewood Drive, Vinton VA 24179)

We hope that you each enjoy your special day!

Please extend a warm welcome to Austin Sowers and his mother, Cynthia (Cindy) Sowers, who both joined Vinton Baptist this past Sunday by profession of faith. They live at 799 Camp North Road, Salem VA 24153. Both plan to be baptized this Sunday at the 11 AM service. Austin and Cindy, we are so happy to welcome you into fellowship at Vinton Baptist and pray God's blessings upon you!

Christian sympathy is extended to Carrie & Tim Tolley in the death of his brother-in-law, Tom Koogler, May 9th.

Annie Mae Broyles Associational Missions

The RVBA Associational Missions Offering is named in memory of Miss Annie Mae Broyles, the first Missionary Director of the first Baptist Mission Center opened by the RVBA in 1939. The majority of funds donated to this annual campaign remain here in the Roanoke Valley to help organizations like Friendship House, Keystone Community Center, Lampstand, and Christian Soldiers' Food Pantry. Please note that the offering envelope in your box of envelopes simply says "Associational Missions Special Offering." Our church goal is $2,200. Please help us make a difference in local missions through donating to this campaign.

Bible Reading Plan

Per Fee & Stuart (How to Read the Bible Book by Book), we are now in a stretch of Joshua (13:1 - 21:45) that primarily relates how the Promised Land is being divided up and allotted to the tribes of Israel. Keep in mind that the tribes are named after the sons of Jacob (whom God renamed Israel). There are 12 tribes, but the Levites do not receive dedicated territory in the Promised Land because God has set them aside to be devoted to himself and his work; God provides for them instead through the offerings of the people (Joshua 13:14). That would leave 11 tribes, except that before Jacob died in Egypt, he essentially adopted Joseph's two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, as his own (Genesis 48). So, while you won't see a territory allotted under the name of Joseph, you will see territories for Ephraim and Manasseh, bringing the number of tribes with territory in the Promised Land back up to 12. (In our reading, sometimes Manasseh and Ephraim are collectively referred to as "Joseph.") Keep in mind also that the tribes of Reuben and Gad, along with half the tribe of Manasseh, had requested and been given land on the east side of the Jordan, promising to go with the rest of the Israelites over the Jordan and help them conquer the land before returning to their own (Numbers 32).

Fee & Stuart suggest that maps might help keep track of the action in Joshua. Click here for a map showing the eventual allotment of territory to all the tribes. You can peruse this website for some additional maps that you might find helpful, as well. Happy reading!

Click here for a printable copy of our Bible reading plan.

Nursery Position Open

We currently have a part-time (fill-in) position available in our church Nursery. This position is a back-up for sickness, vacation, and extra help, as needed. The hourly wage is $12. We are accepting applications from church members before posting publicly. Please see a member of the Human Resources Committee if interested.

Last week one of our deacon teams and two of our ministers cooked and served hot dogs at an event at Herman L. Horn. We received the following notes of thanks from school staff:

Dear VBC friends,

Thank you so much for your time and generosity. Your help at our Books & BBQ Night was greatly appreciated. HLH is so blessed by your support and dedication to our students and staff.

Sincerely, Julie Sandzimier, Principal

Dear Vinton Baptist Church,

Thank you for serving our families and showing God's love through your kindness. You make a difference.

Sandy Hunt, Title I Teacher

Thank you for helping with our Books and BBQ event. We appreciate your kindness and willingness to help.

Emily Murray, Title I Teacher

May 2023 Calendar