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Making the Messy most of your building!

Posted by Lucy Moore on 03 Jan 2020

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A delightful account from Sharon Sampson and the Chearsley Messy Church team of how to make the most of a not-at-all Messy medieval church building! Sharon writes:

'I am sure there are churches up and down the country who would love to run a Messy Church but feel that they just don’t have the space. In our little medieval village of Nether Winchendon, there is no village hall or public space apart from the 13th-century church.  

'Rather than be hindered by the box pews, we decided to make use of them, by turning them into a giant advent calendar. Hence “Messy Church – Open the Box” was born.

'The biggest box pew made a perfect stable for the teenagers to chill out in. And a smaller one made a great ball pit for 4,000 balls where we could celebrate Jesus’ birthday party in style. The bench in the littlest pew made a perfect table for a prayer craft. And the pulpit provided a great vantage point for hunting for those nativity characters travelling around the church towards the stable.

'As is always the case with Messy Church, things don’t always go to plan. There was supposed to be a game where escaped sheep got thrown back through the hole in the hedge, but a giant sheep took up residence instead!

'The pictures give just a small flavour of the 14 activities and refreshments that we had available, through which we managed to share the Christmas story and the love of Jesus with over 70 people. (Not bad in a village of less than 200!)

'So the moral of this story is: don’t be hindered by your space. Let your creative and imaginative side out and you never know what you might achieve!'