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Churches CHARGING for kids bible studies!?

My son little friend invited him to go to this Wed. bible study. It goes through the school year. The info said there was a fee for supplies. I thought okay a 5-10 work book or something. Nope. $30. Now tjhat may not be much to a lot of people but to us that is almost a weeks worth or groceries. So he can't go. I asked what that was for. The 30 covers a work book, journel and cd... okay all that seems a t shirt and a sports bottle. ??? What? Why not make is 15 and NOt do the cup and the shirt. It's not critical to the class is it? Most people already have sprots bottles to send if they need one. I dunno. It just makes me sad he can't go. We had to give Bible school this summer a miss to because all the churches around here were charging between 30 and 50 dollars for the week depending on what 'crafts' they were doing. I understand charging for things like sports or dance but a bible study?


Asked by But_Mommie at 12:36 PM on Aug. 10, 2010 in Religion & Beliefs

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Answers (28)
  • far none of the church here are charging for vbs or weekly bible studies because they know most people can't afford it and its not about the money because churches have youth dept for these types of events...Keep looking there has to be a great church you feel good about that he can attend...

    Answer by mekarevell at 2:30 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • You aren't paying for the shirt and water bottle. Well, you are, but they're only a few cents of the extra cost. That's fundraiser stuff - the wholesale cost of them totals a few dollars at the very most. Your money is going to the program, probably to pay for the people running it, the materials or the extra utilities to keep the room going during an off hour. A lot of programs are charging more money these days - it's the cost of offering services during a severe recession - charitably contributions are down and they have less people able to pay for things so they have to charge more to the people who still can. The cost of running the lights and A/C doesn't go down just because less kids are enrolled.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 2:29 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • I saw a church charging for VBS by me and I was disappointed. If the point of VBS is to reach out into the community and be a witness and give kids a fun safe thing to do during the summer then they need to not charge. I was always raised that it was a free thing, that's why they asked church members to volunteer supplies, and that's what people are giving money to the church to cover. I suppose the giving has gone down in hard times, but that should be even more reason they want to make it free (times being hard that is). It's sad and disappointing to me.

    Answer by MamaSarah1104 at 12:40 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • I think that is the exception, rather than the rule. I don't know of a single church in my area that charges for regularly scheduled activities. Of course, camps and other outings are different. Why don't you call some other churches and ask about their policies?

    Answer by NannyB. at 12:40 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • That sounds normal to me. Churches need to collect the $$ to cover the cost of materials. The teachers are volunteering and not being paid to share their faith with the children, something alot of parents are uncomfortable doing because they feel they have to have all the answers and when a questions is asked that they don't know how to answer they feel embarrased.

    And really, $30 is not alot when you look at how much camps are. My son goes to karate camp and it is $200+ a WEEK!! I would much rather pay $30 then $200.

    Answer by Maureen-MD at 12:42 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • If you want YOUR child to learn YOUR bible you got to willing to pay for it.

    No different than paying tuition for Catholic school.

    Answer by MamaK88 at 1:05 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Our church doesn't charge anything for our regular classes, but I know some churches that do extra "clubs" like Awanas (etc.) do. Usually if churches can afford to, they won't charge anything for these clubs, but that isn't always the case because churches are entirely funded by donations (tithes and offerings). You might try calling the church and finding out if they would be able to help you with the cost of the class. I know our church would rather have a child attend a class, even if the family couldn't cover the cost. Sometimes church members will make an extra donation specifically to help cover costs for those that can't afford to pay. Just let the church know that you really want your son to be able to attend, but would need some help covering the fee. If they won't help, maybe it isn't a church you want your son involved with.

    Answer by CaLizzyMom at 1:14 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Personally, I don't see why you wouldn't expect a charge. I mean, someone else is taking your child and teaching them something you can teach them yourself... I don't see why $30 is a lot, I mean, if you really wanted him to go, you would find a way to make it work. Those "extras" are what excite the kids and keep them thinking about it, plus it adds a bit of "fun" to it...

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 1:17 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Our church NEVER charges for kids' activities, unless they're going somewhere and need to buy tickets such as a concert or an amusement park. We always ask for donations but no one is ever turned away because they can't pay. I think that's terrible and it certainly goes against the mission of reaching out to everyone.

    Answer by ceallaigh at 1:53 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • The gospel is free....freely as you have received, freely give. This sounds like a business...or a class you'd sign your kids up for. I really don't get it.

    Answer by Heathercurlz at 6:15 PM on Aug. 10, 2010