It was great to meet the Messy Church leaders from across Poole at a morning Messy Meet-Up, who had worked hard over Christmas at the local business community's Christmas event to provide a Messy experience for families visiting the marquee. The eleven Messy Churches shared the costs of printing up a leaflet with all the contact details and times of the different Messy Churches. They handed out hundreds at the event and one of the Messy Churches there reported that they had had at least one new family as a result.
It was really good to spend a couple of hours today with Bishop Graham Cray, the CofE Bishop of Fresh Expressions. He is passionate about all God's doing through the movement and very supportive of Messy Church within the wider picture. For me personally, and for you too, I hope, it was great to be encouraged and affirmed in what we're doing in the Mess, and reassuring that the Church 'owns' and 'recognises' Messy Church to such an extent.
The Salvation Army in North London has had several crises to deal with recently - not least the care of many of the families made homeless by the fire in a block of flats in which one family was tragically killed. They work tirelessly to serve the people in their communities, building up strong relationships and being there when people need them.
It was a privilege to be invited to speak at the Mothers' Union Faith and Spirituality Conference. Not often do I get a Bishop as a warm-up act, either. There are so many links between what we're trying to do in Messy Church and the aims of the MU! And what a resource, what a huge pool of committed people across the UK and overseas, all with a concern for supporting families.