Community of St Aidan

ancient spirituality for today


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Messy Church and All-age Community

Posted on 31 July, 2017 at 20:20 Comments comments (1)

I recently spent time working as a Chaplain in a rest home. One of the things that struck me was the very narrow age band in a rest home and the resulting atmosphere. When we are old we need the energy and exuberance of the young to remind us that such an attitude is possible, and perhaps to distract from the constant aches that many elderly live with. When we are young we need the considered approach of those older to remind us to slow down, think first and think of others.

In our very segregated society there are few chances for old and young to be able to offer the gifts of their age group to each other.

This is a strength of Messy Church. One of its core values is to be all-age. Activities are designed so that each age group can participate and learn at a different pace and levels. In fact, as different age levels work together each learns from the other. The insight of a child experiencing something for the first time can reinvigorate the experience for someone jaded from many exposures over the years. Being able to pass on years of experience and learning can help give new purpose to someone who feels as if they are a burden. As we celebrate and eat together relationships form so that it is the person we befriend, not their age.

Cultures around the world have long understood the wisdom of keeping age groups together in extended families and tribes. Messy Church can be viewed as a new form of extended family where instead of blood ties to hold the family together, the love and acceptance first modelled to us by Jesus becomes the glue.

Messy Church and Community

Posted on 11 May, 2017 at 23:35 Comments comments (0)

Lucy Moore, the inspiration behind Messy Church writes: “ Church gives us the chance to make connections, have doors opened for us and open them for others. Being a disciple and being a church is always about ‘us’ not just ‘me’ and this togetherness is absurd and glorious”.

It’s this sense of wanting to provide a place for people to belong, especially for children, that is one of the drivers for Messy Church. If we have belonged to a church we might take for granted the wonderful sense of belonging that such a community offers. But how do those unfamiliar with church discover this truth? Messy Church is one pathway. When we come together as Messy Church: new families, helpers and discoverers, we create a new community. We consciously place Jesus at the centre of this community, and in doing so remind ourselves that love, and thus acceptance is foundational to our Messy Church community.

 The inaugural Messy Church in Papamoa is  Sunday 16 July. 4-6pm. Matariki Messy Church.. 

Harakeke whetu, sky dough, family of stars, star gazing. Clelbration, activities, free meal. 

Come and help build our community of acceptance and love.