Vacation Bible School (VBS) is one of the largest outreach events at your church. Kids from the community flock to your open doors for fun programming.  Parents are excited to have faith-based fun draw their children away from video games. This year, if you want to take your outreach event a step further, consider doing a live stream of your VBS program.

Live streaming shares your VBS outside the walls of your church, reaching more people than you otherwise could and making a greater impact for the kingdom of God. In many ways, it’s doing the work of the sower spreading the seeds of God’s message. When you live stream VBS, you trust the Lord to multiply your efforts and work in ways only He can.

Why You Should Live Stream VBS

Live streaming can help generate excitement about your event. It also gives parents who aren’t sure about letting their children attend a glimpse of your children’s ministry. It’s easy to set up and you can use the same streaming service you use for Sunday mornings.

Keep Parents Involved and Informed

In most cases, parents drop their kids off at church for VBS then arrive hours later to pick them up with little to no idea of what happens in between those times. If you’ve ever tried to get information out of a first grader, you know what we mean.

However, choosing to live stream VBS gives parents the opportunity to be informed and involved. If parents know what is taught during the day, they can ask follow-up questions and be more specific as they talk with their children. They can also pray during the lessons and encourage the teachers. Plus, as a church, you are equipping parents to continue exploring the lessons from VBS.

“Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” (Ephesians 6:4)

Community Outreach

One of the main reasons a church decides to stream weekend services is to show who you are and what you’re all about. It’s a “safe” way for non-attendees to test the waters, so to speak. VBS is the same thing except you’re showcasing your great children’s ministry. It’s a fantastic way to show off the dedicated staff and volunteers who make up your church family.

As churches deal with a decline in attendance, places of worship have to explore ways to stand out. Video streaming is another powerful tool at your disposal. Weekend services highlight your pastoral staff, music, and theology. VBS highlights how you care for children and gives a glimpse into what parents can expect when they decide to attend a worship service.

What to Keep in Mind When You Live Stream VBS

It’s a sad reality of our world today, but it is important that you keep in mind security and safety when you choose to live stream VBS. The potential of threats doesn’t mean you should live in fear or forgo live streaming altogether. However, it does mean that you should be aware and have a plan in place.

Advertise Your Live Stream in Advance

One of the best things you can do to keep people safe is to be transparent. Let them know what you will and won’t be doing during a live stream. In this case, knowledge really is power. Getting the word out allows people to know about your live stream plans so no one is caught off guard when they see cameras.

Have Parents Sign a Release Form

As part of your VBS registration, have parents sign a release form that gives your church permission to stream their children and post pictures and videos of them online. It’s a good idea to upload these forms to your church management system so anyone on your staff can look them up but yet they’re password protected. Make sure all kids have updated permission slips on file.

If you include this permission form on your church website in the same section as the VBS registration, it will be easy for parents to find and fill out.

Designate No-Film Areas and People

One of the best ways you can keep people safe is to pre-identify those kids or adults who wish not to be on video. You can even designate no-video areas in your church.

In order to designate a no-video area, mark off a small section of your sanctuary or gathering area with ropes and signs that let people know the area will not be on camera. This gives them the option to sit there and still be part of the experience.

It’s also important to identify people (especially children) who shouldn’t be on video. Some parents simply don’t want their children on camera, and that’s their right. You should respect their wishes while still allowing their kids to take part. You might have children in foster care at your VBS. These people can wear a specific-color lanyard or name tag with a special sticker on it that tells your camera operators not to show them.

Remember, this may be a sensitive topic for some, so be ready and willing to minister to specific situations if given the opportunity.

Next Steps

Live streaming your VBS  is an amazing way to expand your outreach and create excitement about this important event at your church. However, before you can live stream VBS, you need a live streaming service that will help you meet your goals and further your ministry. ChurchStreaming.tv makes it simple to live stream and they will work to get you set up and ready to live stream VBS this year. Sign up for a free 30-day trial here.