8 April 2019: Messy Church
This afternoon we held one of our Messy Church sessions. Those of us helping arrived by 1:30 pm to set up. There were 29 children, plus their parents or carers, attending; some were already queuing outside before we officially opened the doors at 2 o’clock.
There were various activities with an Easter theme for the children laid out on tables in the church hall:
- paper sheets for colouring, a Biblical word search, a quiz sheet and Easter invitations for colouring;
- an Easter wreath to be constructed from card and cut-outs;
- Palm Sunday palms for children to make by cutting round their own hands (or getting an adult to do it for them);
- an Easter mobile to make from pre-cut egg shapes (see picture); and
- a Resurrection Garden to assemble in waxed paper dishes from moss and small flowers that we provided, a cut-out of three joined crosses, and part of an egg box with which to make the empty tomb.
At each table there was a note for the leader explaining the significance of the activity.
There was a “Scavenger Hunt” in the churchyard. The children were asked to find thirteen cards bearing the Stations of the Cross hung at various places around the churchyard (on shrubs, on lower branches of trees, on gravestones and on the patio fence as it happens).
The children entered into all the activities enthusiastically, particularly the Scavenger Hunt. When they had been round all the activities they were interested in, one of the Sunday Special leaders led the children in a game on the patio before my wife “walked them through” the Easter narrative. Then an ad hoc band of two adults and two children (brother and sister) led a few hymns before we all had hot cross buns before a final act of prayer and departure.
We had set aside an hour for the subsequent clearing up but it didn’t take nearly as long as that.