On National Sunday School Day 2003, the meager donation of $1 per student reached a total sum of $30,000. The large amount of money collected from the students will be used to help the needy around the world.
"I want to express my sincere appreciation to each person who so generously gave in the 'Each 1 Bring $1' offering on National Sunday School Day," says Wes Bartel, director of the national Sunday School department. "On that day, Sunday School students from across America brought $1 a piece. Some of them were very small children; many of them, older people. All of them brought their dollar. And as a result, many individuals have been helped greatly."
The money was sent to Assemblies of God Relief, a ministry of Assemblies of God World Missions then to Convoy of Hope and from there food and other supplies will be sent to Liberia to feed thousands of hungry men, women and children in the midst of a national crisis.
John Bueno, executive director, also expressed his heart of gratitude, "For every one of you, every individual in your churches -- pastors, Sunday School teachers, or students, young or old -- thank you so much. We believe the crisis of the Church is a crisis of participation. We needed your help, and you gave it. As a Church, we feel that ministering with compassion is our God-given responsibility. Jesus taught us to meet the needs of those around us, and He showed how with His own example. As a Church, we feel we need to follow our Master in this concern for the needs of our world. We are trying to respond to the crises and catastrophes in different parts of our world. You have helped us do this. Thank you!"
In response to the ‘Each 1 Bring $1’ offering, Kevin Chilcutt, Christian Education Director of Victory Lighthouse Assembly of God wrote, "While Victory Lighthouse Assembly of God is a new church, those attending Sunday School know it is only with the solid teaching of God's Word that we will grow. Feeling a strong Sunday School is a must, 100 percent of Victory Lighthouse Sunday School participants gave twice the amount requested for the special offering on the recent National Sunday School Day. While the small church only has 14 in regular attendance, the vision is for the church to serve a community in need and Sunday School is a cornerstone to that vision."
Another participant in the offering wrote, "My name is Joe, and I am an inmate [of a state prison]. My job here is to clean up around our living areas. …. Even though I am in prison, my spirit is with God. My body has been locked up, but my spirit is free . . . . Well, I came across your advertisement where you're asking every person in every Sunday class to bring at least one dollar to help touch the poor and suffering around the world. Well, I can't send no cash, but I can send a book of stamps. God willing that may be some help."
"We are thankful for all who participated in the 'Each 1 Bring $1' offering," says Sharon Ellard, promotions coordinator for the Sunday School Department. "We believe giving in this kind of offering benefits Sunday School students who give as well as those who receive their help. Jesus calls each of us to help others. Sometimes we wonder whether one person can really make much of a difference. Joint efforts like this offering allow us to use our combined resources to obey Jesus."
The same offering opportunity for year 2004 will be given on National Sunday School day, September 26.
For more information about the Sunday School Department or to find Sunday School resources, see www.sundayschool.ag.org.