The final Messy Church for the year, held in December, was the Christmas Messy Church. Advent calendars and a Nativity scene with a real baby in a stable built by Ian and Margery were just the start of our very Messy Christmas!!!
15 children enjoyed wonderful clay star or angel decorations to paint, Christmas door hangers, making paper chains for our Christmas tree, and decorating Tic Toc biscuits to complete the Christmas story. In the celebration we had a play about a person shopping for parts of the Nativity scene. They only ended up with a baby Jesus – all other items came in many different types so choice was too hard – and they realized that there was only one Jesus and he was the most important part of the scene! We heard the story of the Christmas Star and Ian continued on the theme of what Christmas is really about and that is the gift of love to us from God in the baby Jesus. We then had a barbeque and Christmas treats for tea.
In October, the Messy Church theme was based on the Old Testament story of Daniel (in the lions’ den). The gathering activity was making chains – which showed when Daniel was imprisoned for telling the people about God. We then went to Babylon where we saw the lions’ den where Daniel was thrown and heard the lion’s roar from under the stage in the hall-helped by Ian.
We made angels because an angel appeared to Daniel in the lion’s den and he helped him escape. People painted lion face prints and paw prints and made lion faces out of sponge pieces.
Messy Church September”s theme was “The Wise Builder”. We built houses from all types of materials and tested their strength to see if we were wise builders. The house built on sand collapsed when threatened by water. Stories, songs and prayers complimented our activities and we concluded with a tasty shared meal.
Our story was about a farmer who had two sons. One day the younger son asked for his share of the farm so he could sell it and leave. So the father gave the son what he asked.
When all his money was spent the only job the youngest son could get was feeding pigs.
Finally the son came to his senses so he began the long journey home.
The father’s heart was filled with joy and ran to embrace his son.
In the gospel of St John chapter 15:1-11, Jesus said, “I am the true vine”. Messy Church this month was centred around growth, fruitfulness and staying close to Jesus (the vine).
Our gathering activity was making branches to attach to a central vine root. Then there was bookmarks decorated with vines, biscuits decorated with mint leaves, creating the images of wine leaves on muslin by hammering the leaves (most popular activity), painting a large vine.
In the celebration, we sang “I love you and God loves you” and “I’ve got Peace like a River” with a verse about the Vine. The story was of “Basil the Brilliant Branch” and Ian reflected on how we are all part of “the vine” – God’s Family even thought we are different.
We ended with baked potatoes and salad followed by the iced biscuits and ice cream.
We had the most children so far with lots of adults –what a joyous event it was!
Easter is such a big story from Palm Sunday through to the Resurrection on Easter Sunday ! So, we made people to place along the road to Jerusalem and wave palms as Jesus rode by but no donkeys in this year’s Easter Messy Church. Then everyone made a bread roll of their own design with a decoration on top (to represent the Last Supper),crosses were made out of beads ,roosters were made that crowed (when Peter denied Jesus three times) , Roman Soldier helmets were painted (the Roman soldier recognized Jesus as the messiah when he was on the cross) and the empty tomb was made from air drying clay ,gravel and branches.
Ian wove all these activities into the Easter story , in the Celebration in church including the items made. “Hey King where’s your Crown?” and “If I were a butterfly” were the songs we all sang with actions ,after an interactive prayer thanking God for giving us Jesus.
We all joined for a yummy tea including eating the bread we made.
A Palm Sunday path was created through sharing made items including the people below.
Helmets for the soldiers
The empty tomb after Jesus was resurrected.
February – Jarius’ daughter.
Our first Messy Church for 2013 was about Jairius’ daughter who became very ill and died before Jesus could be called. But when Jesus came to see her, she became well again.
A very enthusiastic group of children and adults were very busy making Get Well cards, bedside lights and models of people in beds. There was even a real bed in the hall! Everyone wanted to get in to it!
Soaps for gifts for sick people were modelled and set.
Fruit on skewers were made as food that sick people might like! They were certainly enjoyed after a meal of chicken and salad in a lettuce cup and pancakes!
In the celebration we sang songs about how God loves us and heard the story of Jarius’ daughter. Ian talked about God looking after us always and how we should look after each other!