Vacation Bible School 2020

(Totally “RE-CONSTRUCTED” due to COVID-19)
Pre-Kindergarten through 5th grade

CONCRETE & CRANES Building On The Love Of Jesus! …the foundation that lasts forever.

Vacation Bible School - Concrete and Cranes Jesus Our Strong Foundation ​

Salem has been filled with concrete and cranes, rivets and rebar, bulldozers and backhoes for many, many months.  It seems fitting to celebrate the completion of our Renewing God’s House project rediscovering ways to build our faith on Jesus as we uncover the truth that He who began a good work will be faithful to carry it on to completion!

The world as we know it has changed and we face many unknowns about our interactions in the coming months.  The Children, Youth and Family Team has decided to modify our annual VBS program, combining take home packets with multiple virtual opportunities for simple faith formation and fun.

Rather than expecting families to host one very full week of VBS in their homes, our daily themes will be presented as weekly themes from July 5-August 2.  Families can walk through each theme at their own pace. Individual weekly packs for participants will include all supplies and instructions needed for crafts, games, a service project, caring conversations and other theme related fun.

Adult Vacation Bible School​

New! Adults have the opportunity to connect one through Zoom each Wednesday beginning on July 8 at 6:30pm.
Dave Griffith will be leading Adult Vacation Bible School.



Grab your hard hat and safety vest and join us for five weeks of Vacation Bible School Fun! Each Sunday evening plan to pick-up your materials at Salem Lutheran Church (or if you selected home delivery -deliveries will be made Sundays between 4pm-6pm.)

Check your email for the link as there will be small group check-ins live on Zoom once a week.

Each week’s bag for Concrete and Cranes at Salem will have all materials included for:

• Bible story
• Craft
• Mission project
• Recreation
• and more!

Jesus Chose Matthew, Matthew 9:9-13

Matthew was a tax collector an often sat at a booth where people came to pay their taxes. Many people did not like tax collectors because they often took more money than they were supposed to. They kept extra for themselves! One day Jesus walked by and saw Matthew sitting at the tollbooth. Jesus said to Matthew “Follow me.” Matthew got up immediately, leaving everything behind, and followed Jesus.

Matthew hosted a grand banquet at his house. Jesus and his disciples came to the banquet. Many tax collectors and other sinners were also at the banquet eating with Jesus and the disciples. When the Pharisees (teachers of the law) saw this, they began to complain to the disciples. They asked why Jesus would eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners.

Jesus overheard the Pharisees talking to his disciples. He said to them, “It is not those who are well who need a doctor but those who are sick. For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners” Jesus was not interested in how good a person was or how bad. Jesus wanted people to listen and follow him.

Main Point: Jesus chooses to love me.  I can’t earn it.


Contact Deacon Jill for questions.

Paul’s Redemption, Acts 26:1-29

Paul had been chosen by God to tell the good news about Jesus to the Gentiles (people who were not Jews).  Paul traveled thousands of miles telling people about Jesus and starting churches. This made some people so angry they had him arrested, however instead of being angry, Paul knew he could use his arrest to talk to many very important government officials.

While Paul was in prison, King Agrippa came to visit Festus, the local governor. Festus told the King about Paul and the King asked to see Paul and listen to his story. Paul began by reminding everyone that he had grown up in Jerusalem and strictly followed the laws and rules of the Pharisees. He spoke out against Jesus, he placed many people who were followers of Jesus in jail, and he even supported the rulers’ decisions to put Jesus’ followers to death.

Then, Paul told about the day he had been traveling to Damascus to arrest believers in Jesus. “King Agrippa,” Paul said, “I was walking along the road about midday when I saw a light brighter than the sun! I fell to the ground and so did all the people traveling with me! I heard a voice speak to me!”

The voice said, “Why are you persecuting me?” Paul explained that he was confused because he did not see anyone so he asked who was speaking. The voice replied, “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting.”  Jesus told Paul that he had been chosen to go and tell the Gentiles how they could have faith in Jesus and receive forgiveness of sins.

Paul explain to King Agrippa that he obeyed the voice and told people everywhere that Jesus, the Messiah, suffered and died but rose again. Paul explained how God had helped him. Paul told the King that everything he said was true. “Are you trying to convince me to become a Christian too?” King Agrippa asked.  Paul replied, “I truly wish that not only you, but that everyone who listens to me would believe in Jesus.”

Main Point:  Jesus loves me regardless of my sin.

Jesus Prayed in the Garden   Matthew 26:36-46

Jesus knew he had come to earth to be the Savior of the world. He knew that meant he would have to die. On the last night Jesus spent with his disciples, he took them to a place called Gethsemane. Jesus said to the men, “Sit here while I go pray.” Then Jesus asked Peter and two other disciples, James and John, to go a little farther with him.

Jesus was very sad and troubled because he knew he was going to die on the cross to save people from their sins. Jesus asked Peter, James and John to stay awake with him because he was so distressed.

When Jesus had gone a little farther into the garden alone, he fell to his knees and began to pray. He asked God if there was any other way to provide forgiveness other than by dying. Jesus did not want to disobey his Father, but he also knew all things are possible for God. Jesus told God that he would do whatever God wanted him to do.

Jesus returned to Peter, James, and John, but found them sleeping. He said to Peter, “Couldn’t you stay awake with me for just an hour? Stay awake and pray.”  Jesus went alone a second time to pray. When he came back, the three were asleep again because they could not keep their eyes open.

Finally, Jesus went alone a third time to pray. When he returned and found the three men sleeping, he told them to get up and go with him. Jesus knew it was time to go with the soldiers and follow through with God’s plan. He was willing to suffer and die on the cross to save us from our sin.

Main Point:  Jesus chose to die for me.

Jesus’ Resurrection and Promise   Matthew 28: 1-10, 16-20

Jesus was arrested for crimes he did not commit, beaten and nailed to a cross where he died for the sins of all people. His body was placed in a tomb. A large stone was placed over the opening of the tomb. Guards stood by the tomb so no one could get in. The followers of Jesus believed their hope was gone.

Early on Sunday morning Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of James, walked to the tomb. There had been a violent earthquake and an angel of the Lord had come down from heaven. The angel rolled back the stone that had been placed in front of the tomb and sat on it. The angel had the appearance of lightning and his clothes were as white as snow. The guards who had been placed in front of the tomb to guard Jesus’ body were so frightened that they had fainted and fell to the ground.

When the women saw the angel, they were frightened, but the angel reminded them that Jesus had risen, just as he had told them he would. The angel invited the women to come see where Jesus had been and then told them to go and tell Jesus’ disciples what they had seen.

Jesus met the women on the way and said to them “Do not be afraid.  Go and tell my disciples to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there.”

The women ran to tell the disciples the great news – Jesus is alive! They told the disciples to go to Galilee, where Jesus would meet them. The 11 disciples traveled to the mountain in Galilee where Jesus had directed them to go.

When the disciples saw Jesus, they worshipped him. Jesus said to the men, “Go and make disciples everywhere. Baptize people and teach them to do everything I have told you. Then Jesus made an amazing promise.  He promised to be with them always!

Main Point:  Jesus will always love me.

Wise and Foolish Builders   Matthew 7:24-29

One day Jesus was speaking to a crowd of people. He told them a parable (which is a story Jesus told to help people understand the Kingdom of God) about two builders to help them understand why it was so important to listen to his words and do what he said.

Jesus began by telling the crowd that everyone who heard the words he spoke and acted on them would be like the wise man who built his house on a rock. The house had a strong foundation, so that when the rains fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew against it, the house did not collapse.

However, those who heard Jesus words but did not act on them would be like the foolish man who built his house on the sand.  His house did not have a strong foundation so when the rains fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew against the house, it came crashing down.

Jesus teaching amazed the people who had been listening to him. Jesus told this parable to help us understand that when we listen and obey him, we will have a strong foundation for whatever happens in our lives.


Main Point:  Jesus love is the foundation for the rest of my life.

Concrete & Cranes Mission Project​

Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope.

A world where everyone has a decent place to live. 

Demonstrate the love of Jesus Christ.

Focus on shelter.

Advocate for affordable housing.

Promote dignity and hope.

Support sustainable and transformative development.

What is Habitat for Humanity?

Habitat for Humanity partners with people in your community, and all over the world, to help them build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. With your support, Habitat homeowners achieve the strength, stability and independence they need to build a better life for themselves and for their families. Through our 2020 Strategic Plan, Habitat for Humanity will serve more people than ever before through decent and affordable housing.

Through our weekly on-line VBS resources, VBS families will have multiple opportunities to LEARN about Habitat for Humanity, PRAY for the work they do, GIVE to their organization, DO a variety of hospitality mission projects and ENCOURAGE others to do the same!

WEEK ONE PRAYER: Loving God, you made us in your image and blessed us with wisdom, creativity, skill, compassion and love. Help us to see your people in need, ability to hear your call to serve, and willingness to be your hands and feet. How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord Almighty! Even the sparrow has found a home and the swallow a nest—a place near your altar, O Lord. Amen.

To donate to Salem’s VBS Mission Project for Habitat, please make checks payable to:
Salem Lutheran Church and add “Habitat” to memo line.  You may mail checks to: 

Salem Lutheran Church; 1700 W. War Memorial Drive; Peoria, IL 61614
or drop your donation off if you pick up your VBS bags at church.

You may also make your donation on-line by clicking here.

Learn more about Habitat for Humanity at

Salem Lutheran Church's Renewing God's House Together - Take a Tour!​

Salem has been filled with concrete and cranes, rivets and rebar, and backhoes for many, many months. It seems fitting to celebrate the completion of our Renewing God’s House project rediscovering ways to build our faith on Jesus as we uncover the truth that He who began a good work will be faithful to carry it on to completion!

Take a tour with Council President Dave Rees of the project progress.