News, Stories and Resources from the MESSY CHURCH CANADA Team. Let us know by email if you have ideas, stories, or activities to share. The newsletter is published monthly, approximately mid-month. Messy Church Canada is a ministry of Wycliffe College, Toronto Ontario.
This summer (Saturday July 21st) there will be a Messy Church workshop at the Festival of Faith in Oshawa as part of the United Church's General Council 43. We are looking forward to seeing many United Church friends there and hope to meet new ones!
We hope to plan more events/workshops in the Fall. Please let us know if you'd like to host one or attend one in your area.
Our next newsletter will be published mid summer... Have a great one!
Blessings, Sue ~ on behalf of the Messy Church Canada Team
Sue Kalbfleisch, MCC Team Leader Phone: 1-905-648-0302 Email
In The News...
Register for the 2nd International Messy Church Conference in the UK at the High Leigh Conference Centre (same great location as in May 2016) on May 3-5, 2019 - and keep the organizers in your prayers! The International Conference website is up, so check out all the information!
If you plan to be in Scotland during July you might want to check out the Refuel18 Conference from July 23-28. Full Details
Our own Canadian Toronto Conference keynotes featuring Lucy Moore and Martyn Payne are posted on the conference website as well as workshop presentation notes.
Discipleship Assessment ToolMeeting regularly as a Messy Church team provides invaluable space for those who coordinate and lead Messy Church to discuss, plan and pray together. This Self Review Toolkit (new link) will enable you to use some of that time to pause and reflect on your Messy Church and to identify some ways you would like to develop your Messy Church in the future.
New Messy Churches
Please welcome and pray for our newest Messy Church launching this month,St. George’s Anglican Church, in Owen Sound ON (June 26).
Please notify us if you have started a Messy Church or if you hear about someone who has started one. Then we can let the appropriate Regional Coordinator know so you can be connected with someone nearby for support and networking - and so that we will have an accurate national database too. At this moment of writing, there are almost 4000 Messy Churches registered world-wide on the international site!
Messy Church Regional Coordinators
We are blessed with a group of 15 volunteer Regional Coordinators across Canada whose role is to assist, support and network with their region's Messy Churches. To find a Regional Coordinator near you, check here.
Mark and Jane Hird-Rutter, Messy Church Regional Coordinators (Vancouver Island & the Lower Mainland) presented a Messy Church session at the ‘Inside-Outside Church’ Conference in the Diocese of New Westminster in Burnaby BC on Saturday, May 26. Well done, Mark and Jane!
Jane and I rose early (4:30am) on Saturday, May 26, to present at the Anglican Diocese of New Westminster’s one-day conference entitled “Inside-Outside Church”. Continued…
Events for Training, Networking and just for fun!
Upcoming Events Please let us know of Messy Meet Ups, Messy Fiestas and workshops so they can be publicized - or if you'd like to host one!
Many thanks to Dawn Mercer and St. Matts Anglican Church, Islington and to Barbara Patterson (Toronto Regional Coordinator) for hosting a great Messy Meet Up on May 12th - lots of sharing and enthusiasm from all the participants!Check out the event photos on our FaceBook page!
Also thanks to Shari Markovich and the North Burlington Baptist Church for hosting a Messy Fiesta on June 2nd and to Tanya Yuen, the Children and Family Ministries Associate of the Canadian Baptists of Ontario and Quebec (CBOQ) for looking after the food and refreshments - her wonderful Coconut Curry Lentil Soup which met vegan, gluten free, and lactose free requirements was a real hit! Soup Recipe
Messy Church Event Descriptions
Messy Church Canada provides and facilitates workshops that are open to all Christian denominations - and so we encourage participation from a wide range of churches. All events are listed with details at www.messychurch.ca
Messy Fiesta - a full day workshop for folks new to Messy Church AND for Messy Church Leadership teams to connect and share ideas. Usually on a Saturday from 10am-3pm. Includes 'doing' Messy Church in the morning with welcome, 10 activities, celebration and lunch followed by lots of discussion, Q & Eh, and networking.
Messy Meet Up - a get together of Messy Church practitioners who meet to share ideas, network, improve their Messy Church and encourage each other. A Messy Meet Up can be held on an evening, Saturday or whenever it works for the group involved, and usually lasts for 2-3 hours.
Messy Thoughts by Andy Kalbfleisch
I thought I would share the responses to a few questions we were asked to answer as to why conference attendees should attend a Messy Church workshop at the upcoming United Church of Canada's 43rd General Council. I think they are relevant to all mainline denominations.
Q1 Make a compelling case for why busy people and Commissioners should attend your particular workshop.
A1 Where have all the children gone? Where have all the young families gone? As we look around our aging congregations these two questions are increasingly asked. As we age we become increasingly resistant to change. Messy Church is a new way of being church that reaches out to the young and old alike.
Q2 Why are you personally passionate about the workshop that you are leading?
A2 We have seen the exciting results in churches that have ‘planted’ a Messy Church in their communities. The intergenerational focus of Messy Church encourages long time Christians to share their wisdom with newcomers who are seeking a meaning for their lives. It also helps families/care givers help children understand what it means to be a child of God.
Q3 How will your workshop prepare participants for the changes coming in the United Church?
A3 Closure is a reality that many churches face in an increasingly secular world. Yet there are those out there who are seeking answers to questions that ‘the world’ can’t seem to answer. Messy Church like all Fresh Expressions of Church offers us an opportunity to engage families who are looking for answers in a way that offers Hospitality, Creativity, Celebration for all ages and most importantly is Christ centred.
This May the Messy Church at St George's Ste Anne-de-Bellevue celebrated our first confirmation. Six candidates affirmed their commitment to Jesus Christ in front of our Bishop. It was like a "regular" confirmation, yet different. There were still crafts: Holy Spirit theme. And of course there was a feast afterwards. For the celebration, we went upstairs to our sanctuary where we sang songs, the
the Bishop told a story and our candidates made their promises. Our Church was full to overflowing with people, most of whom have no other connection to Church. That is the power of Messy Church: we would never have made contact with our candidates otherwise. For preparation they all came to every Messy Church since September and worked together as a group to learn about the faith. For every theme they worked on there was a craft so our candidates had a dossier of crafts they had made which they could use to talk ab out their faith. We are very grateful to our Bishop for being so willing to come and be a Messy Bishop and do a confirmation service in a Messy way. Praise be to God! Check out more photos on their FaceBook Page.
Neil Mancor, St George, Ste Anne-de-Bellevue, QC
MC Regional Coordinator for Quebec, Ottawa Valley, PEI and New Brunswick
Resources and Ideas for your Messy Church
There are 14 complete Messy Church Themes created by Canadian Messy Church Leaders on our website.
Cathy Garbutt, our RC in London ON, has a great Pinterest site - Messy Church Board. Cathy keeps adding boards related to various themes, so check her site often.
Some Free Themes - reprinted from last month:
Messy Wedding/Wedding at Cana LINKto materials from our friends in the UK as they think of celebrating a royal wedding in May. Wedding at Cana ideas on Messy Pinterest to accompany the Messy Wedding session. 70 pins including tutorial videos.
Real Metheme from the September-December 'Get Messy' magazine, with permission.
Everywhere Prayertheme- also check out the Thy Kingdom Come Website has lots more resources and ideas!
Please check out the updated booklist for all the Messy Church (and related) books available in Canada along with ordering information HERE
Resources and links from around the world...
From the UK
Check out theFaith in Homessite - where you'll find lots of ideas for families - for both at Messy Church and for families between MC gatherings.
Lucy's monthly eNewsletter: Here is theJUNE newsletter which includes lots of articles and information.If you are looking for back issues (including the April issue which will be available the beginning of April) of the UK Newsletter checkthis link. Lucy's blog includes Maximizing the Mess as well as lots of additional articles and ideas.
The 'Get Messy' magazine published 3X yearly is a great resource. Go to the BRF website and pay for the download for the issue you wish to receive. TheMay to August issue includes great articles and four new themes:Good 24/7, The money puzzle, Wonderfully made, Creating and caring