last updated on: 17th Feb 2014
There are already a number of churches in the diocese and across Leicestershire, and the world, running Messy Church, but if you don't know what it is then here is a brief introduction.
Messy church has five core values, which are: being all age, Christ centred, hospitality, creativity and celebration. They are all important! People often think that Messy Church is only for children but the idea is that it should be for everyone, although it is true that it often particularly appeals to those with, or looking after, children but it should be welcoming to all ages
Messy Church generally involves activities of some sort; often crafty but the only limit is the imagination, a short celebration linked to the key story of the day followed by food. A friend recently asked me what it was and thought it sounded interesting, I should point out that she doesn't have any children but does enjoy doing things, and in my experience many people would agree.
Messy Churches run through out the country and overseas. Some take place on Saturday or Sunday, either morning or afternoon, whilst others take place during the week. The time and location need to fit the place that you are in, there is no one size fits all perfect time. You will find that food varies according to the facilities people have access to, if hot food isn't possible there is always cold which often tends to be sandwiches and cake but can be as creative as you like!
Here's a helpful leaflet to give you an idea Messy
I am the regional co-ordinator for Messy Church, working with all churches running Messy Church in Leicestershire, so if I can help in any way then please get in touch. If you are part of a Messy Church has your Messy Church registered on the Messy Church website? http://www.messychurch.org.uk/ The website has been updated and is worth a look, registration is easy and it means that people can find your Messy Church, which makes it easier for them to come along.
Have you heard?
Discipleship is a hot topic in the Messy Church community and the wider church. Paul Moore's book Making Disciples in Messy Church is worth a read, you can find the details at http://www.messychurch.org.uk/resource/making-disciples-in-messy-church, it is also available through Christian Resources in Leicester, Telephone 0116 2615222 or Enquiries@christianresourcesleicester.com. If anyone is interested in discussing the issue and the book then please get in touch, as it would be great to get a group, or even groups in different areas, together.
Messy Church Theology is now out! I haven't read much yet but it is proving a very interesting read. It features chapters on a number of themes and from a variety of contributors. Take a look at http://www.brfonline.org.uk/9780857461711/. Again it would be an interesting one to discuss, should you be interested then just let me know, there are sample pages too if you want to get a feel for it
There's more Messy Celebration is a short easy to read book designed to help you make the most of you Messy Church celebration time and is well worth a look. There are plenty of things to ponder despite it only being 62 pages. Why not check out http://www.brfonline.org.uk/9780857461162/ for further details, including some sample pages. Messy Celebration will be a theme for the next Messy Meetup in April.
We had our first Messy Meetup in September and hope to have others, so keep an eye out for more details. We had some interesting discussions including worries people had about starting Messy Church and things that they wish someone had told them before they started Messy Church. We also used our creativity to think about what we could do with some small plastic boxes, watch out for the ideas appearing shortly.
What can you think of to do with little boxes that were got in a sale? Check out some ideas here, with thanks to the contributors.
The next Messy Meetup, which is a chance for us to get together and support each other is Saturday 5th April in the diary, 10-1pm ish at St Martins House, Leicester. Although there is no parking available at St Martins House we have an arrangement with the nearby St Nicholas Circle NCP car park which will allow you to park for £3. One of the areas that crops up is the Celebration aspect of Messy Church and I thought that would be a good focus for the meetup, so if you have anything you would like to share then just let me know. I’ll also have some resources out that you can look at. If you would like to come please let me know via email: email@example.com, it will mean that I know how much cake to make and so I can make sure there are enough car park tickets available. If there are specific resources that you would like to be able to see then let me know and I’ll see what I can do.
Get Messy is a quarterly magazine that includes a range of articles and reflections, including a 'Dear Jane' page plus some session outlines. For some more information click on the link below.
Are you already running Messy Church? Please drop me a line and let me know. I am trying to plot locations on a map, so it would be a great help. If you are thinking about starting Messy Church, would like to chat about what you already do, or need ideas then feel free to get in touch.
Baker Ross - If you regularly order things then you may have noticed that they are doing more crafts linked to Christianity, it is well worth taking a look at www.bakerross.co.uk/christianity. What is equally as good is that orders placed on behalf of Messy Church can get a 10% discount! You will need to set up a specific account i.e. Messy Church Your location, and then use promo ref BRF10, although I was able to change details on the account I had. Each time you spend Messy Church also benefits, so it is great for everyone.
Infinite Resources also offer a range of craft materials, including a Messy Prayer Tree, click for details http://www.inf.co.uk/infinite/RMC_Tree_KM0001.html. They also have a 10 for a tenner range that was created to support Messy Churches. Check out the Easter range by clicking the link http://www.inf.co.uk/infinite/Easter-Range.html. Have a browse of the site, they do a great range of wooden shapes including crosses and sheep although you have to have a good look around to make sure you don't miss anything and they don't all have pictures.
If you have any stories to share then feel free to let me have them, as it would be great to share the fantastic things happening in Messy Church.
Louise Warner, Children and Families Officer, firstname.lastname@example.org Tel:0116 2615313