Thank You by Camille

Thank you, VWPC, for joy, laughter and inspiration.

— Camille Dunlap

Camille knows what preschoolers like –markers, play-doh and silly songs. She has been a Sunday school teacher for nearly two decades, her latest post in preschool, teaching Bible stories to pretty little girls and rowdy little boys who always want a snack and have trouble sitting still.

Q: What does it look like in your classroom on Sunday mornings?

A: A hustle and bustle of children, shining eyes, full of excitement. One child hides in the closet or under the table. One says, “Do you like my dress? Watch me twirl!” They are always waiting to place their stars on the attendance charts.

Q: What have you learned from your students?

A: I have learned patience and have gained an uplifting spiritual awareness because of their needs and have learned the importance of sharing, whether to share blessings before meals or the importance of sharing toys. I’ve learned to be observant of their behaviors – laughter, sadness, shyness and so on.

Q: What is your favorite part of your time together?

A: My most favorite part is to hear their blessings before we have our snack. They ask God to bless everything from the dogs to the cats to the birds and we do.

Q: What is your secret to teaching the Bible to small children?

A: It has to be taught simply, and you need to have teaching aids. I have a short memory verse for them – something they can hear once or twice and remember. I keep the Bible in the middle in the table and tell them what we are learning is from that. We are studying Isaac and Rebekah so I have been focusing on pictures. They need to be able to see who Isaac was and who Rebekah was, talk about the way the houses looked and the clothing they wore back then, and even the dry desert weather. It has to be very descriptive. Their attention span is short.

Q: How has teaching preschool-aged children affected your faith?

A: How wonderful it is to see the lightness in the shining eyes of a child. Their enthusiasm for Bible stories and their desire to listen, their faces show awe and wonder, and this is so uplifting for me. My faith is strong and is much deeper as I see the needs of our children. We need to nurture them and be their role models.

Q: How do you describe what you do to others?

A: I tell them, especially my Hospice store customers, that it is very uplifting to teach preschoolers. I’m very proud to say I’m a Sunday school teacher because I want people to know that I have faith in God and faith in humanity. I tell them, “It is so much fun that you wouldn’t believe it!”

Q: As a long-time member, what do you enjoy most at VWPC?

A: The whole church family; the togetherness of our congregation; and being able to know personally every person, and to laugh when they laugh, cry when they cry and grieve when they grieve.

We are so blessed to have our minister, who strives for perfection in his sermons. With his words, he encourages us to live in harmony and be servants to others.

Van Wyck Presbyterian Church has been the inspirational part of my life. It only could be an inspiration because of every individual that attends. Each person is important to the foundation of the church.

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