Last month I was invited to visit a Messy Church near Epsom in south London. Liz Townsend is the Messy Church team leader here, and she is so grateful for all the Messy Church advice and ideas available from The Bible Reading Fellowship (BRF) that she has encouraged her church to join in with our Messy Church £100 Appeal.
I love teams. I love working with teams. Today was so much more enjoyable because of teamwork. This morning my L19 Who Let The Dads Out? team welcomed the dads and young children back to St Mary's Grassendale after a short break, due to church hall roof repairs, and cooked bacon baps and offered delicious sponsored coffee. Not only did the dads come back but we welcomed three new babies for the first time too.
Messy Church at All Saints Church, Hoole, met for years on a Thursday after school. It was successful in that they averaged around 50 each month but there was something missing. Helen Ellis, Messy coordinator, prayed for men to come along, to play and interact with their children and perhaps to join the small leadership team. Helen decided to take a risk and change the day that their Messy Church met.
Update from Pastor Sandra Rudd at the Sitka Lutheran Church in Alaska
'Here is the information to encourage others:
I think back to 10 years ago, when there was just one church doing Messy Church… BRF hadn’t even taken it on as one of its ‘programmes’… churches were just starting to ask about it, wonder about starting one too… but basically all the training on offer was me telling my church’s story and all of us making it up as we went along. It was a little lonely at times.
Welcome to Greg Ross and Brenton Prigge in Western Australia! Also Welcome to Sue and Glen Taylor in Queensland, Australia! These enthusiastic people are our new Regional Coordinators in very large regions of Australia and we hope that they will attract even more RCs to help them build teams to support all of the growing number of Messy Churches.
Messy Church SEND has recently won a community project award.
The project draws people from a wide catchment area around Adeyfield Free Church. The families that attend have children with a varied range of disabilities including Cerebral Palsy, Downs Syndrome, learning disabilities and those on the Autistic spectrum.
Our first Messy Church on saturday 11th May, was a great success for children, family and messy team, especially messy team. learning about
God in crafts, games, art, stories, song, prayers and sharing a meal together was just perfect for the family.
I felt very lucky to be part of the fun. I can not believe that the only one that got messy was me with paint all over my clean new jeans.
We had been praying for a way to have a deeper conversation about Jesus with the many families that we come in contact with in our community through playgroup and other programs. We have trialled Messy Church services this year. Next Sunday will be our eighth and we are having a ball!
When we look back over the 100plus people who have attended, approximately 40% are people who would not normally attend our other church services.