10 Terrible Vacation Bible School Themes

Spring has sprung and that means churches across the country are hard at work preparing for Vacation Bible School and Backyard Bible Clubs this summer. Generally, churches select vacation bible school themes that allow all the lessons and games and activities can fit together seamlessly.

Well, here are some options churches could choose, but I would suggest going with a different option.

Here are 10 vacation bible school themes that…may not be the best.

Theme #1: The Hunger Games

One lucky family will get their child back at the end of the week! But no worries – you can watch the whole week on closed-circuit cameras piped directly into your home whether you like or not.

Theme #2: The Exodus

For this morning’s activity, we’re going to paint a doorpost in blood! After that, we’ll play “avoid the flaming serpents.” For the snack, we’ll have pheasant . . . every day.

Theme #3: Game of Thrones

Nobody is a good guy, everyone dies, but hey, there be dragons. Also, don’t leave the premises or the white walkers will get you.

Theme #4: The Life of Paul

Monday: shipwrecked

Tuesday: beaten with rods

Wednesday: robbed

Thursday: imprisoned

Friday: martyred

Theme #5: Breaking Bad

For the afternoon craft we’ll make crystal meth in our underwear, but don’t worry we have masks so nobody gets asphyxiated.

Theme #6: Foxe’s Book of Martyrs

Ok, all the 1s go to that corner; you’ll be burned at the stake. All the 2s go to that corner; you’ll be fed to lions. All the 3s go to that corner; you’ll be crucified.

Theme #7: The Reformation

Team One, you’re the papists. Your goal is to eliminate team two with all prejudice.

Team Two, you’re the reformers. Your goal is print as many Bibles and tack up as many lists of theses as you can before dying. The winner will be determined by history.

Theme #8: Make America Great Again

Let’s go back in time to when women were expected to stay in the kitchen, racial segregation abounded, and the Bible was used to defend both. Wasn’t it grand, boys and girls?

Theme #9: Common Core Bible Teaching

We’ll take every Bible story you’ve ever learned, apply new and opaque vocabulary, try to make it a metaphor, and refuse to let you memorize anything. Then we’ll do a scantron test at the end of the week.

Theme #10: Reformed Conference

Every attendee must wear either a plaid shirt or a blazer. We need at least 13 boys for every girl in attendance. Bible lessons will last for 50-60 minutes. Criticism will be heaped upon attendees and teachers via social media.

Yes, these vacation bible school themes may be terrible, but if you’re desperate for ideas, any of these will do.

Just hire yourself a lawyer first.

I live in the Nashville area and spend my days helping churches with leadership development. My nights are spent writing and rooting for Minnesota sports teams. I also podcast a bit. I'm the author of The Pastor's Kid: Finding Your Own Faith and Identity, Help My Unbelief: Why Doubt is Not the Enemy of Faith, and The Curious Christian: How Discovering Wonder Enriches Every Part of Life