How Group VBS landed in Peru

How Group VBS landed in Peru
June 15, 2016 Laycie Costigan

Ever wonder how the VBS team chooses which country to explore for Cross Culture VBS?

Every year, the VBS team at Group gets to select a culture to share with kids all over North America. How do we make such a huge decision? After all, we have the world to choose from! Believe it or not, we don’t just throw darts at a map of the world. We want this experience to open kids’ eyes—and hearts—to a diverse and surprising culture. We want to take kids to an impressionable, captivating place that ignites imaginations and excitement; giving kids a life-changing look at how God’s great love is at work all over the world.

So, why Peru? For starters, it offers a feast for the senses:

  • Color: From the vibrant green jungle in the Amazon basin to the bright blue sky above the soaring Andes, an experience in Peru doesn’t come without color! Brightly-colored traditional clothing, a paint palette of buildings, yellowed reed islands, and markets boasting food in full spectrum.
  • Sound: The rainforest is alive with singing birds, hushing rushes of rain across the forest canopy, and hypnotic lullabies of night-time wildlife. Cities burst with the constant hum of traffic, “beep-beep” of horns, and iconic pan flute music.
  • Taste: Peru’s rich land supplies an endless variety of potatoes, corn, and fruit. Fill your plate with quinoa, rice, beef, chicken, pork, plantains, olives, avocadoes, peppers, soft bread, and fresh cheese.
  • Smell: Damp earth and sweet exotic flowers flood your nostrils. The humid coastal air offers a smell you can almost taste—the salty Pacific Ocean and fresh-caught fish.
  • Touch: Let your skin soak in the drenching humidity of the jungle or bask in a warm, heavy tropical rain. Enjoy the delicate softness of alpaca wool or trace the expertly-chiseled lines between the giant stones of Machu Picchu.

Group’s research team spent two weeks in Peru being “cultural sponges” so we could bring back beautiful pictures, stories of the everyday lives of five Peruvian children, and a sensory experience of the list above to you and your ministry. We connected with our longtime ministry partners at LifeTree Adventures who made sure we experienced real, everyday life in many areas of Peru.

At the end of your adventure, everyone at Passport to Peru VBS will not only feel like they’ve spent a week in this unique country (without the luggage and bug spray!) but they’ll have experienced a culture where faith and joy often come in appreciating God’s simplest gifts.

Peru1 Peru2 Peru3

Fueled by fond ministry memories of summers at camp as well as children’s and youth ministry, Laycie’s seen many lock-ins, mess hall raids, zip lines, pies in the face, and lives changed by Jesus! You can often find her on a trail, behind a camera lens, or scrolling through Pinterest.


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