Ho'okele Staff | Jul 28, 2012
Navy chaplain Lt. James Ragain good-naturedly accepted a pie in the face July 20 to celebrate the culmination of a successful school supplies collection drive held by the children of Pearl Harbor Memorial Chapel’s vacation Bible school last week.
Kids who attended last week’s vacation Bible school gave back to the community in a big way.
They collected school supplies for the students of Makalapa Elementary School. Leaders of the vacation Bible school decided to stir up additional interest in the collection drive by having the boys vie against the girls to see which group could collect the most supplies.
If the boys won, the chap-lain’s wife, Michelle, would get the pie in the face, and if the girls won, the chaplain would be the recipient of the pie.
When the announcement came at Pearl Harbor Memorial Chapel last Friday that the girls had narrowly won by collecting the most supplies, the chaplain laughed and said, “I’m going to take one for the team.” Then his wife took the cream pie, as vacation Bible school children and their parents watched from the chapel’s pews, and she pushed it into her husband’s face for a good cause.
“Vacation Bible school went great. It was awesome. The volunteer staff and kids seemed to have fun every day. They were expecting the pie in the face all week,” the chaplain said.
The boys and girls filled two three-foot-high boxes full of school supplies, although the girls brought in just a bit more. The supplies included crayons, paper, folders and notebooks for the students of Makalapa Elementary.
The chaplain explained that they chose Makalapa because it has a significant military student population who needed help obtaining supplies and that they wanted to build a relationship with the school.
“It was a good competition. Raising school supplies kept their interest,” said Michelle.
The week-long vacation Bible school at the chapel included activities involving art, music, drama and storytelling for the children.
“I liked having them spend a week with God, knowing they had a lot of time every day,” said Navy parent Melissa Goretskie, whose daughter Hannah participated.
“I got my daughter enrolled to learn about the Bible and learn verses,” said John Menanno, Air Force Office of Special Investigation special agent . He said it was great that most of the children who participated were roughly the same age. “They easily interacted together,” Menanno added.
Most of the people running the program are volunteers. Some are military spouses or family members, while others are active duty personnel.
Among the volunteers was teenager Ashley Koplin, who helped guide the younger children in their daily activities. “I liked that you actually get to interact with the children and help them learn more about the Bible,” Koplin said.