Messy advice

Advice from the Messy Church team on a wide variety of topics and questions, including Messy Cathedrals, Communion and Liturgy in Messy Churches.

Holy Communion in Messy Church

A really helpful guide to doing Messy Church Communion in an Anglican setting. This is a collaboration between Messy Church BRF and the Liturgical Commission of the Church of England, with help from Hymns Ancient and Modern. Read the introductory blog

Encouraging families to live out faith in the home: part 2

The guide is for families and churches to give you some reassurance about how to get started with Christianity in the home. Getting Started Take into account the following factors when offering support and resources to families: Appropriate language and content when selecting Bible stories There is a range of Bibles available for children and young adults. It is helpful if families can be given guidance as to what is appropriate for different age groups.

Social Action

This guide is for families and churches on the importance of social action as part of your Messy Church. Messy social action: Messy Church seeks to be both ecclesial and missional; in other words, to be both fully a church where the congregation is nurtured and taught in the faith,  as well as a church that goes on reaching out creatively with the compassion of God and the good news of Jesus to others in its community and beyond.

Encouraging families to live out faith in the home

The guide is for families and churches to give you some reasurrance before you start to talk about faith in the home.  Reassurance before starting Whatever a parent’s/carer’s level of knowledge, there are some important points to recognise at the start.

Messy Cathedrals

The guide shows you the best way to host a Messy Cathedral, along with lots of other ideas that are worth considering! How Do We Run a Messy Cathedral Event? Running a Messy Cathedral event is a brilliant idea! It provides the opportunity to showcase Messy Church in the region, it helps to enlighten people who may be thinking about starting their own Messy Church and it can also encourage those who are already involved in a Messy Church, not forgetting the joy of taking part in a Messy Church together in a high-profile building.

Messy Evangelism

This guide is to highlight the importance of sharing Christian faith in Messy Church.

Messy Twinning

This guide is to show you the positives of twinning with another Messy Church and how you might put it into practise. 

How to engage teenagers

Here are ways to help your Messy Churches feel more all-age rather than directed just at younger children.

Liturgy and Messy Church

Here are ways of exploring and growing liturgy that make sense in a Messy setting.

How do we finance our Messy Church?

It's got lots of tips and hints on easy ways to make your Messy Church work on shoestring because 'you don't need posh crafts'. 

Why should we register our Messy Church?

The Messy Church team have put together a 'Maximising the Mess' guide with reasons for you to register your Messy Church on our directory. It's got lots of important points that take into consideration the previous guides, so definitely take a read, because we'd love to have you as part of the ever-growing Messy Church community. 

How do we increase our numbers?

Messy Churches come in all different shapes and sizes, much like people! There is no magic formula for increasing the amount of people that roll through the doors.

How do we welcome people with additional needs at Messy Church?

Messy Churches have all different types of people coming through their doors. How do you make sure that you welcome every member equally and are accommodating to all people, including those with SEND? 

How do we operate as a larger Messy Church?

Over the years, Messy Church has grown hugely and we are now celebrating over 3000 churches that are part of the network. With the amount of registrations growing monthly, the amount of families attending this all-age ministry is surely growing too.  The team has decided to put together helpful 'Maximising the Mess' guides to help your families to be excited, ready to come back each month and for you to make the most of your Messy Church.

Liturgy bridging traditional and Messy Church

Sue Taylor sent us the following liturgy that they are using for Communion. Her introduction:

Twenty ways to develop Messy Church out of an event, festival or pilot

Many churches take part in a festival, fete or fair at which Messy Church features in some way. Examples might be the Big Church Day Out, the Royal Norfolk Show or one of the Fusion Festivals. Other opportunities to look out for might be events like farmers' markets, car boot sales, craft fairs, patronal festivals or other annual events. Running Messy Church at an open event like one of these is great fun and hugely rewarding but very different from holding it on a regular basis and it's worth bearing the differences in mind.

Guidance on photo and image copyright

If you use images or photographs either on a website or in publicity material, you generally need to obtain copyright permission first. If you are using images on your website or publicity materials that you have found on Google (or equivalent) by searching, but where you have not looked for copyright information, you are likely in breach of copyright.

Team building

You can't run Messy Church on your own - you need a team. You often need a large team by church leadership standards. But don't panic: this simply means you are giving more people a chance to grow in their own discipleship as they serve in Messy Church.

Sustaining your Messy Church & team

There will be exciting positive months when everything goes well, crowds are pawing at the door asking searching questions about the place of suffering in the world, and when every craft leads young and old into a deep relationship with God and with each other.

Encouraging participation

Joining in! Doing stuff! Being a player, not a spectator! However you want to put it, it's really important to give everyone the chance to participate as much as possible in all parts of Messy Church as participation is a way for people to feel they belong, to learn and to stay engaged. Participation in the welcome time Is anyone hanging back, too shy to join in the board games or activities at the start? Have you got enough leaders to keep an eye open for newcomers and to join in alongside them?

Messy Church & people with disabilities

Many Messy Churches enjoy the company of people with disabilities. With this in mind, we asked Cristina Gangemi to describe how to make a Messy Church experience most helpful for families in which someone has a disability. Cristina produced the following piece of work full of interest, challenge and practical ideas. Some of these we can put into practice tomorrow; some of them require careful planning and some may be a step too far for teams who are already stretched. But we can all have our eyes opened to new ways of making sure that all people are welcome in our Messy Churches.

An introduction for church leaders

We've put together a helpful introduction to Messy Church for church leaders. Hopefully this will be a useful tool to use to talk to your church leaders about Messy Church. The PDF includes endorsements, benefits for your church and some of the why and how.