It is for adults and children to enjoy together and use hands-on activities to explore Bible stories, to reflect a God of creativity and to give people a chance to play together.
It reflects a God of unconditional love and is a church for people outside church, providing an oasis of welcome and a safe space in which to thrive. Messy Church is about hospitality, expressed most evidently by eating together – whether it’s a plate of sandwiches to share, or sausage and mash.
Children are an integral part of the congregation and are both models of discipleship and disciples themselves, as are the adults who play the same dual roles. You’ll see an experienced Christian learning from a less experienced one and vice versa; a child teaching an adult; sometimes one family learns from another en masse; sometimes the Christian community demonstrates how to live for Jesus to those who don’t yet know him; sometimes a parent teaches a child something.
lf discipleship needs a mixture of formal learning, informal learning and social learning, Messy Church has elements of all three as it (formally) explores the Bible through activities and storytelling, provides opportunities for informal conversation and observation, and encourages different levels of social learning both at the gathered Messy Church and in encouragement to take that learned faith back into the home during the rest of the month.
Of the three styles of learning, Messy Church is stronger on the social and informal ways of learning.