“What Next” Questions

“What Next” Questions

Roberta J Egli

During the past several months of hunkering down at home, I have gained a greater appreciation for the global Messy Church Community and the USA network.  Hearing how people from all over the world are adapting their Messy Churches to on-line, or at home, or zoom calls has been a highlight.  I give thanks to God for all of the many ways that people from all over the USA network and world have creatively shared the good news of Christ in a large variety of ways over the past four months.

 One of my weekly routines has been to turn into the Messy Church/BRF Facebook Live event every Wednesday. Several weeks ago, Lucy Moore,founder of Messy Church, voiced something that I had been thinking for a while.  When COVID-19 began, there was a sense that we were in for a several month crisis that would soon pass and then we would get back to our regular church routines.  How silly!   It is now apparent that we will be living with COVID-19 precautions for an extended period of time. Even though some churches across the country are re-opening across the country many others will not hold in person worship until much later this fall or in early 2021. Even when we gather again in person, Messy Church will look much different as we have entered into a new reality of how we can gather to worship all-ages together!  

Lucy shared some questions that I have been pondering. (Read More Here)

  • Is it too early to decide on a course of action or strategy for the next seven months?  Should we just do all we can to listen to families, leaders of Messy Churches, wise people?
  • Should we keep pushing the ‘Keep contact, keep caring, keep serving, keep reaching out even if nobody seems to respond, keep offering Messy Church at home resources, keep doing Messy Church on Zoom and Facebook Live for a much longer stretch than we’d imagined
  • Should we see this as a fallow/sabbatical/Jubilee period and give Messy Churches permission/encouragement to stop rushing about…and use the time to think and pray and listen to God?
  • Is this an opportunity to leave the garden to its own devices and recover or not after the storm to re-imagine everything from scratch and break the ground in the new field we now find ourselves in? (“Wilding” is a concept that i learned about in Lucy’s blog, learn more here)

Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything.

Rainer Maria Rilke

What I found inspiring at the end of the 30 minute FB live session with Lucy is that she did not proceed to give any answers to the questions. She simply invited others to join her in conversation to discern which questions to ask.

We are called at this time to live in the tension of ‘what next’ questions which reminds me a favorite quote:

Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke, 1903
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Letters to a Young Poet

So, my friends, what are the questions that you have been asking in your local church settings?  In my next blogpost I will share some of the ‘what next’ questions we have been asking at Messy Church USA.  Our mission as an organization is to equip Messy Churches to start, sustain and connect.  In order to meet our mission, we need to hear from you what it is that you need at this time. Look for an opportunity to gather via zoom to learn from one another on July 23rd.

Grace and Peace,

Roberta

Below are some articles that have been helpful in my pondering! Happy Reading!

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Equipping Messy Churches to start, sustain and connect across the USA

Celebrate the Mess Postponed until October 2021

Due to the continued COVID-19 pandemic, the Messy Church USA Board of Directors have decided to postpone the Celebrate the Mess National Conference for one year. We are so grateful that both Lucy Moore and Stephen Fischbacher are both available to be with us on our new dates of  October 21-23, 2021.  We will continue to use the same location for the 2021 conference at Northfield Community Church in the greater Chicago area. 

Although we will need to wait one more year to all gather, we are in process of planning an ‘on-line’ celebration this fall.  As a new expression of church, Messy Church is primed to continue to innovate to share the love of Christ with all-ages…certainly something to CELEBRATE! Stay Tuned for more information.  

If you have already registered for the 2020 event, you will be contacted regarding your registration.  If you made hotel reservations, please move forward with cancelling them.  We will put up our registration for the 2021 conference after January 2021. Contact Roberta Egli with any questions at roberta@messychurchusa.org.

Stones of Help

Johannah Myers, Associate Director of Messy Church USA

Johannah Myers from South Carolina led the Messy Church Facebook Live event on June 10th.  Watch the FB live here.

Johannah Myers
Messy Church UK Facebook Live, June 10, 2020

Johannah’s original blog post from Messy Church UK is posted below.

I’m in a part of the world where things are opening back up – including churches. In fact, we’re planning to start back with in-person worship this week. It’s very scary. And it’s very different! One of the changes that will be hardest for many of us is that we won’t be singing together any time soon. I’m not sure if I know how to be Methodist if I can’t sing!

One of my favorite hymns is ‘Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing’. There’s a line in the second verse that says, ‘Here I raise my Ebenezer.’ And of course, how many times have we sung this song without ever knowing what an Ebenezer was and how we might would raise one?!

It comes from a rather random story in 1 Samuel 7. The Israelites messed up (again) and lost the ark of the covenant to the Philistines. Of course, while the Philistines were in possession of the ark, they experienced nothing but trouble – passing it around from city to city because no one wanted it! Finally, the Philistines take the ark back to Israel! But it’s another 20 years before it seems the Israelites are ready to turn back to God in a way that they can bring the ark back into their center. Samuel gathers them to repent and pray. But the Philistines learn that Israel’s gathering, and they decide to attack. Israel calls on God for help and God protects them. Samuel takes a stone and sets it up and call it Ebenezer – eben = stone, ezer = help. Samuel wanted the people to remember the ways that God helped them. The stone was a visible sign of God’s faithfulness.

A few years ago, on a retreat, we made ‘Stones of Help’. Mine has names of people who, throughout my life, have been a source of strength, help, encouragement. As I look over this rock and all the names, I realize how many ages are represented!

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As we begin to think about Messy Church during this season of forced physical distance, but also what Messy Church will look like as we begin to gather, I wonder about how we will make space for the Messy togetherness.

For the last few years at my church, we’ve had small groups (10 or so people, 3-5 family units) that meet monthly for really what amounts to a mini-Messy Church or a Messy Church at home. They’ve done Bible study and activities together, worked on mission projects, they eat together… so basically Messy Church, just smaller! As we’ve moved out of strict shelter-at-home restrictions, some of our Companion groups have even gathered to reconnect in person.

Like many of you, I’m realizing that our Messy Church may be one of the last pieces we can bring back in full. But like Greg, who did this Facebook Live earlier today, I’m wondering what opportunities this season presents for us. Our Companion groups were an accompaniment of our Messy Church – now, they might very well be the primary access to Messy Church, at least for a season. Maybe we think small as a way of thinking big?

Going back to my Ebenezer – my stone of help. These people are here, listed on my rock, because along the way we had space for relationships to grow and development. In those spaces, I found help and support along my faith journey. These are the people who pointed to God, the ultimate source of my strength and help. Where will we create the spaces for relationships to flourish in ways that we can point the way to God, our Rock?

Equipping Messy Churches to start, sustain and connect in the USA.

Messy Adventure- Take Two- Journey with Jesus to a Hillside

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As per the previous blog post, while sitting in our respective home offices, many people journeyed around the world on a Messy Adventure on May 21st.  This fifteen-hour YouTube live event was the brainstorm of Messy Church founder, Lucy Moore.  Messy Church USA collaborators provided two one-hour sessions for the world event.   

Our second one-hour session explored a few of the many teachings from what is known as the ‘Sermon on the Mount’ from Matthew 5-8. We began by taking a hike with Jim and his dog Milo to the mountains surrounding Palmdale, CA.  Jim shared some background on this important teaching of Jesus before he showed us the lights that began to shine brighter after the sunset.   

We explored sharing the light of Christ through pictures, a science experiment, hearing the scripture in another hike in Texas, a story around the campfire and learning the art of making cards to share with others.   We also explored ways in which people are reaching out to others during the Pandemic to share Christ’s light.  We ended our session with the prayer that Jesus taught his followers on the hillside shared from around the world.  

Below is the outline for the Messy Session.  The link for the video follows the outline. Be sure to also check out the bonus video from Community UMC that we did not get into our session due to a oops glitch. 

Light your Light Shine
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Jesus journeys to a hillside to teach Messy Adventure

Theme: Share the Light of Christ

Scripture:  Matthew 5: 1,14-16 (NRSV)

“When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain, and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them…You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in Heaven.”

Outline

  • Hike with Jim and Milo
  • Science Experiment with Light
  • Video Montage -Where have you seen Light of Christ during the Pandemic?
  • Scripture reading with Jenna and her dog in Texas
  • Song
  • Making Cards to share Messy Activity
  • Other ways to share light of Christ
  • Lord’s Prayer from around the world

Join the Journey to Hillside Adventure Here

Find the entire Around the World Messy Adventures Here

Bonus Video from Community United Methodist in Huntington Beach Here 

Equipping Messy Churches to start, sustain and connect in the USA.

Journey to the Jordan Messy Adventure

While sitting in our respective home offices, many people journeyed around the world on a Messy Adventure on May 21st.  This fifteen-hour YouTube live event was the brainstorm of Messy Church founder, Lucy Moore.  Messy Church USA collaborators provided two one-hour sessions for the world event.   Our first session was filled with stories and activities focused on baptism.

In remembrance of Jesus baptism in the Jordan, Messy Church USA virtually traveled from coast to coast as we explored stories from various waterways.  We began at the James River in Virginia with Cindy Banek taking us to the water’s edge and then sharing a number of shell craft messy activities.  Next, we went to the Mighty Mississippi as Jillian Mayer from Illinois led us in a breath prayer as we gazed at the Mississippi flowing past the majestic St. Louis Arch. Roberta Egli then introduced the Willamette river that flows south to north in Oregon.  WE then headed to the California coast line of the Pacific Ocean as Marty Drake and Leyla Wagner shared the scripture through sand art. 

A Coast to Coast Journey

the outline for the Jesus Journeys to the Jordan Messy Church Session if below and a link to the video follows the outline.

Theme: Come to the Water

Scripture:  Mark 1: 9-11

“In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved; with you, I am well pleased’”

Outline:

  • Welcome
  • St James River and Shell Craft Activity
  • Prayer at the Mighty Mississippi
  • A song by the Willamette
  • Scripture at the Pacific Ocean
  • A Messy Science Water activity
  • Renewal of Baptism Celebration
  • Water Fun

Messy Church Adventure USA Collaborators:  Cindy Banek(VA), Marty Drake(CA), Roberta Egli(OR), Crystal Goetz(WA), Jillian Mayer(IL), Johannah Myers(SC),Jenna Reinke(TX), Leyla Wagner(CA) and Jim White(CA).

Join the Journey to Jordan Adventure Here

Find the entire Around the World Messy Adventures Here

Renewal of baptism Order

Sahalie Falls, Oregon
Picture by Roberta Egli

Messy Church Now

Stories of How Messy Churches are reaching their communities now

Curated by Roberta Egli

iStock. Used with Permission

Messy Church USA…Forming Community while Physically Distant

One of the great joys in my role at Messy Church USA is to discover how people are innovating and adapting Messy Church to their own specific context.  During these past three months, as we have physically distanced due to Covid-19, you have used a variety of ways to engage with your Messy Church communities.  Well done! 

To equip you to sustain your Messy Church (MC) during this weird pandemic time, I am the stories of two different churches. They have adapted their MC to meet the needs of their communities. First the story from Barb Tegtmeier from Christ United Methodist in Albuquerque, NM followed by a story from Dori Fotsch, Marie Reyes, and Jill Elsemore of Thousand Oaks United Methodist in Thousand Oaks, CA.

30- Minute Weekly Zoom from Albuquerque, NM

Barb writes:

 Our weekly 30-minute Zoom Messy Church came about accidentally…or maybe not. I recorded and posted a MC message for the first “real MC” in April.  Our MC congregation liked it, but missed not seeing each other.  So, the thought came to me to try getting together every Saturday at our normal start time of 4:00 for just 30 minutes based on several webinars which suggested to keep online sermons, etc. shorter than normal because it is too easy to lose people’s attention.  The most amazing things started happening once I announced the new weekly plan.

 One family who attends regularly doesn’t usually have a chance to take any leadership role…(however a) Mom asked to come up with an activity involving food to combine those two elements of MC that people were missing.  The story was Adam and Eve and she planned (a food activity…with proper protection (we)put together bags with the ingredients then joined in a parade of two to deliver the activity packets to our MC family’s doorsteps Saturday morning.  The kids got to do something they loved and also were able to see people who are normally at MC from their car seats.  (She) led the activity online before we did a Celebration message.

 Another benefit of MC online is that attendees can invite family and friends around the country to join us for just 30 minutes.  We (met a cousin from) Nebraska this Saturday who invited all of us on a road trip to go visit them. 

Messy Combination

On-site physically distanced activity, at home activities and a 30-minute Zoom to FB live Celebration in Thousand Oaks, CA

The team from Thousand Oaks (TO) United Methodist, were ambitious as they adapted their Messy Church for the Covid- 19 pandemic.  The theme was Soul on Fire!, based on the story of Pentecost from Acts 2. Prior to the Saturday 30-minute Zoom to Facebook Live celebration, they both delivered bags of craft activities and created an outline for a dove banner at the church.  People dropped by the church to add their thumb prints to a beautiful dove banner while maintaining physical distance.

The bilingual TO MC used both live and previously recorded videos to share music, scripture readings, a skit and prayer during their gathered together live zoom to Facebook celebration. As they gathered on their Zoom to Facebook live event on Saturday afternoon, they focused on the scripture of Pentecost when people were confused as they began to speak in multiple languages. 

Jesus O., a high school senior who attends TO MC, created a video of a variety of people praying the Lord’s prayer in their language that was used during their celebration time. Seeing and hearing the Lord’s Prayer in English, Spanish, Farci, Korean and Sign Language brought the message to life for today’s context. Messy Church USA is grateful that TO MC  graciously gave us permission to use their video in our contribution to the Messy Global Adventure on May 21st.  

Lord’s Prayer Video by Jesus O. 

Following their May MC, families have been sharing pictures of their at home activities on the TO MC Facebook page.  What a wonderfully creative way to keep Messy Church families engaged with one another even though they are unable to gather in person!

Messy Church NOW Opportunity

On Tuesday June 30th, you will have an opportunity to discover three more models of how Messy churches have adapted their gatherings to be safe for all.  Messy Church USA NOW is a 90-minute webinar that will engage you and your team in ways you can reach out to your Messy Church community. 

Learn More and Register Here 

For now, I would love to hear how you are adapting your Messy Church.  Send me your stories to share with others and some pictures!

Grace and Peace, Roberta

Equipping Messy Churches to start, sustain and connect in the USA

A Confession and Prayer for the USA

A Blog Post from Roberta J. Egli, Executive Director of Messy Church USA

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Several weeks ago, as I was preparing material for our “Jesus Journeys to the Jordan” Global Messy Adventure video, I debated telling the story of the African American spiritual hymn, Wade in the Water. I kept thinking of the song as I recorded videos of the Willamette river close to my home and wanted to use the song in the video but sensed a need to share the story and confess to our global Messy Church brothers and sisters in the USA we have not faced our original foundational sin of racism. However, I ended up not using the video as it didn’t seem to ‘fit’ with the story we wanted to tell.

On Memorial Day, I realized that I could no longer be silent regarding our country’s complicity in the continuation of systemic racism. In one day, the news lit up with the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, MN and the story of a white woman who deliberately called police during a conflict with an African American bird watching man in Central Park NY. I realize that I can only speak from my experience as a white woman of privilege.  I do believe that I must listen, study, confess and learn while also having the courage to speak. 

These words from Jim Winkler, National Council of Churches President, convict me that I can no longer stay silent.

We are all responsible for doing the hard work to end racism and white supremacy, especially white people. The burden cannot always be on our African American brothers and sisters. These are not just ideologies or individual opinions. These are the systemic issues at the core of American society and it is deadly. The words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ring loudly: ‘Riots are the language of the unheard.’ Our nation needs healing but there can be no healing without justice.

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So the following is what i initially wrote two weeks ago and the rough video that I recorded beside the river that was not used in our Messy Adventure from Messy Church USA video.    

Wade in the water is one of more than six thousand African American spirituals that have been cataloged. Water is an important image in the African American Spiritual…water was a primary aspect of slave experience—the ‘middle passage’ marked the beginning of their captivity as they traveled across the ocean to a new land in slave ships.  The Ohio River was the dividing line between slavery and freedom on the Underground Railroad.

There is a story, although not confirmed,  that Harriet Tubman and other underground railroad conductors used songs like Wade in the Water. They were songs with their own codes that communicated hidden messages that guided slaves on their dangerous journey to freedom.  It is thought that “Wade in the Water” was used to tell slaves to get into the water to avoid being seen and make it through. This is an example of a map song, where directions are coded into the lyrics.

God’s a gonna trouble the water is taken from the scripture in John 5 when the Spirit came down and troubled the water at the Bethesda pool (also known as the pool by the sheep gate).  When the water had been stirred, whomever was able to get into the water first was healed of their disease. Many people were waiting by the pool. One man had waited for 38 years as he required help from others to enter the pool.

Howard Thurman- an African American theologian wrote,“For the slaves the ‘troubled waters’ meant the ups and downs of life. Within the context of the ‘troubled waters” of life there are healing waters, because God is in the midst of the turmoil. Do not shrink form moving confidently out into the choppy seas. Wade in the water, because God is troubling the water.”

Slavery is part of our history as United States of America—not one we are proud of but one that we must acknowledge before we can move forward for justice for all. Before we take a moment to remember our baptism, it is important to remember the things in our past and present that separate us from receiving God’s love.

Wade in the Water Video

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Questions for Messy Church USA to ponder:

  • How might Messy Church be a sign of hope in the midst of our despair?
  • How might Messy Church be a place where we can build bridges?
  • How might we talk in our Messy Churches about race, about diversity, about justice?
  • Messy Church loves hands-on creativity. What might our confessions look, taste, feel, smell like? How can we put these confessions, worries, hopes, etc into something creative or tangible? 

Resources for Conversations about Racism with children and all ages

Prayer

God of all ages, from the beginning of time, we have turned away from your vision of love as you desired beloved community and we broke our relationship with you and one another. We are a broken people…we are a broken nation. Forgive us for our refusal to see clearly our sin of racism. Forgive us…send your mercy. Guide us in taking steps to know peace and justice and to work together to create equity from our chaos. We pray in the name of Jesus the Christ, with the power of the Holy Spirit who is always creating something new, AMEN.

My friends, I am praying for you…I am praying for us. May the grace of God, the love of Jesus Christ and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all. AMEN.

Grace and peace, Roberta

Messy Church USA logo and mission
Equipping Messy Churches to start, sustain and connect across the USA

On May 21st you are invited to an Around the World Messy Adventure

To celebrate the amazing international Messy Church community and to bring a little joy to the day we will set out on the speediest round-the-world trip ever. On Thursday May 21st, (Ascension Day for the liturgical geeks), Messy Church leaders from England, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the USA will journey (digitally) journey through the Bible with worship, storytelling, prayer and food for thought. Starting with Lucy Moore, Messy Church founder and captain of this trip, the voyage begins at 11 Pm (Pacific Daylight Time on May 20th) and will conclude at 3 pm (PDT).  The Messy Church USA Journey to the Jordan begins at 9am(PDT) and our Journey to the Hillside will follow at 10 am(PDT). 

Join us as on the Messy Church YouTube  as we set sail (virtually), take off (in our imagination) and rev our (digital) engines for a whole day of Mess!

The Messy Church USA collaborators for this adventure are Cindy Banek,(VA). Robin Cannon (NC), Marty Drake (CA), Roberta Egli (OR), Crystal Goetz (WA), Jillian Mayer (IL), Johannah Myers (SC), Jenna Reinke (TX), Leyla Wagner (CA), and Jim White(CA).

Messy Church around the World, created by Dave Martin

The entire journey itinerary for this Messy Adventure is below in British Standard Time!

Mini Mess Pentecost

A Blogpost by Lindsey Goodyear

Who’s in need of a “Mini Mess”?  I know I am!  Lately it seems that every blog I write, I go into hoping it will be the last one I write about the quarantine.  As it stands, it looks as though staying home may be in the cards for all of us for a bit.  Yes, they are slowly adding new phases to get us back to normal, but to protect those in our family and communities, the majority of us are hunkering down and staying put.  With Pentecost fast approaching, I felt like it was the right time to send home another Messy Church plan to keep us in good spirits. 

For those who don’t know the story, here’s a very short summary.  Pentecost is the name of a Jewish harvest festival. Just as Easter (in Greek “pascha”) is a holiday derived of an adaptation of the Jewish Passover, so too Pentecost is a Christian holiday derived from the Jewish festival of Shavuot. The Apostles, and other followers of Jesus, were celebrating the Jewish festival in Jerusalem, when they heard the sound of a mighty wind and “tongues of fire” came down on them.  Then, the Holy Spirit descended on them.  Remarkably, the attendees of the festival found themselves immediately being able to speak in other languages without difficulty.  People were no longer separated by language barriers and thus, the gospel was available to the world. No matter your gender, age, or color of skin, every person from every nation on God’s Earth could now know the Lord.  Because we were now all one under the Gospel of our Lord, the Pentecost is also referred to the birth of the church.  Pentecost, which means fifty, is always fifty days after Easter. This year, we celebrate on May 31.  Please use the following “Mini Mess” as a guide to celebrate God’s gift to the world with your family!  

There is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male and female; since you are all one in Christ Jesus

Galatians 3:2

Three Pentecost Crafts

 Mighty Winds

 Need: Construction paper, paint, straws.

To recreate the mighty wind the Apostles witnessed, drop small amounts of paint all over your piece of construction paper.  Next, use the straw to blow the paint and watch as it creates magnificent patterns.  Try blowing from all directions to see what cool new art emerges.

*NOTE– This activity is much more fun if you use many different colors of paint!

**Talk about: What is the strongest wind you’ve ever been in?  How did it make you feel?  Were you excited?  Scared?

Fire Sticks

Need: Sticks from outside, 24” pieces of ribbon (reds, oranges, yellows, if possible), hot glue gun.

Once you’ve collected the sticks, cut the ribbons to the appropriate sizes.  Place a dab of glue at one end of the stick and begin attaching the ribbons (there should be enough room for 6 or 7 pieces depending on the size of your stick).  Once you’ve glued the pieces, cut a small portion of ribbon and wrap it around the glued pieces to ensure their security. Place a final dab of glue for the small security ribbon and you are ready!  Go outside and run around with the sticks overhead and watch as the wind turns the ribbons into something resembling fire. 

**Talk about: What do you think was going through the minds of the Apostles when they saw “tongues of fire” above their heads?  Would you have run away or stayed?

Babel 

Need: Foreign language book or access to internet.

Since the language barrier was broken when the Holy Spirit descended, take some time to learn a phrase in another language.  Try and have each family member learn a different phrase in a different language that they can recite and teach each other when you sit down for dinner.  We are so fortunate to have access to any language in the world.  Let’s take advantage of that access and teach each other!

**Talk about: Of all the beautiful languages found all over the world, what is the one language you wish you were fluid in? 

Celebration:  You might say the events at the Pentecost was the Holy Spirit’s way of exploding into the entire world.  He caused a reaction inside the hearts of people far and wide when He promised His unconditional love to all who follow.  A particularly good way of visually showing a reaction is through the use of baking soda and vinegar.  When the vinegar touches the baking soda, a mini explosion happens!  The soda begins to bubble, grow, and spread.  Cover a plate with baking soda and, using a dropper of vinegar, drop small amounts of vinegar around the plate.  With each drop, use the opportunity to explain the reaction your heart has because God is a part of you.  Pass the dropper around the table and let every family member take a turn.  This is a great opportunity to learn all the ways God brings joy to not only our hearts, but those of our family members, on a daily basis.  Try to make this more than a celebration.  Just because you don’t have baking soda and vinegar out everyday, talking with others about the impact God has on our lives is a great way to get in the habit of a positive and thankful mindset.  Try to make it a weekly or even daily discussion!

Prayer:  Dear heavenly Father, we come to you today with exploding hearts of love!  We are so thankful for the comfort you provide us with and ask that those who are suffering without you are brought to your light and feel relief.  We thank you for you descent so that people all over the world may know your perfect love.  We ask for your continued guidance as we navigate the world in such an uncertain time.  May you open our eyes and hearts and bring peace upon us.  We love you and thank you.  In your name we pray, Amen.

Meal Idea: Birthday Cake

Need: Boxed cake mix, frosting, sprinkles, and candles.

Let’s make a birthday cake and celebrate the birth of the Christian church!  Make the cake per the instructions on the box, bake, and let cool.  Then, decorate using the frosting and sprinkles.  Have fun with this!  You can even put candles in and sing “happy birthday” to the church if you’d like.  Then, cut the cake, serve, and enjoy! 

Lindsey Goodyear and her family attend Messy Church at Community UMC in Hungtington Beach, CA. You can reach her at lindseygoodyear@gmail.com
Messy Church USA logo and mission
Equipping Messy Churches to start, sustain and connect across the USA

Messy Value of Hospitality

Five Values of Messy Church

On Wednesday May 13th, Charis Lambert, the first ever Regional Coordinator for Messy Church in the UK, held the third Messy Church Facebook Live event focused on the five foundational values.  She led a international group in thinking about how we can extend hospitality when we long to be with our Messy community!  

Messy Hospitality

Messy Hospitality during the lock-down

by Charis Lambert

When I google Messy Church, it comes up with the tag line ‘Messy Church- church but not as you know it.’

Unfortunately, at the moment Messy Church itself is not as we know (and love) it. And in this changed situation, the core value of hospitality is the one that might seem the hardest to re-envisage – where we cannot meet together physically and share the hospitality of the meal, the food, the time around the table. And we are grieving that loss, as we also acknowledge that many are suffering food poverty at this difficult time.

But hospitality is (and always has been) so much more than just food!

READ MORE 

Graphic by Dave Martin, Messy Church BRF

Around the World Messy Church Adventure

To celebrate the amazing international Messy Church community and to bring a little joy to the day we will set out on the speediest round-the-world trip ever. On Thursday May 21st, (Ascension Day for the liturgical geeks), Messy Church leaders from England, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the USA will journey (digitally) journey through the Bible with worship, storytelling, prayer and food for thought. Starting with Lucy Moore, Messy Church founder and captain of this trip, begins at 8 am Midnight Pacific Time and will conclude at 2 pm Pacific Time).

Join us as on the Messy Church YouTube  as we set sail (virtually), take off (in our imagination) and rev our (digital) engines for a whole day of Mess!

The Messy Church USA collaborators for this adventure are Cindy Banek,(VA). Robin Cannon (NC), Marty Drake (CA), Roberta Egli (OR), Crystal Goetz (WA), Jillian Mayer (IL), Johannah Myers (SC), Jenna Reinke (TX), Leyla Wagner (CA), and Jim White(CA).

Time listed above is British Summer Time.
Be sure to check for your local time zone.