Children and Families Work (Dec 2019)

The run up to Christmas is always busy and, while Advent is certainly a time of celebration and anticipation of Christ’s birth, it is more than that. It is only in the shadow of Advent that the miracle of Christmas can be fully understood, the fulfilled promise of Christ’s first coming and the yet-to-be-fulfilled promise of his second coming.

It has also been busy because of all the events at the end of October and the beginning of November.

Firstly, we held a Messy church on Wednesday 30th October. It was very well attended; so well attended that we sent out for more food. Our theme was ‘The Best Party Ever’, and the children enjoyed making horns, crowns, faces with fruits, as well as doing challenges. It was great seeing families who are not able to attend regularly on a Sunday morning.

On the 31st October, a team of us went out on to the street to engage with the families who were attending the Pumpkin Path. Our message, ‘that with Jesus there is nothing to be scared of’, was very well received with a number of parents thanking us for our message. You could tell by their voices that they really meant it. We gave one sweet to every person who was willing to hear our message of God’s love We used 14 tubs of sweets (75 sweets in each tub) so that is over a thousand people that heard our Christian message. We will be doing something similar at the Christmas Fair, with hopefully similar responses.

On the last weekend in October, Dawn and I travelled down to Rugby for the Puppet and Creative Ministry Festival 2020. It was fantastic meeting up with Bob Hartman, Shane Rootes and Ian and David Jones who ran our puppet training in September. Dawn and I attended different seminars that included, ‘Script writing’,

‘Running a 21st Century Kid’s Ministry’, ‘Using puppets in Care Homes and with People with Dementia’, ‘Community Outreach including school’s Work’, ‘Worship and Spiritual Development for Children with Complex Multiple Disabilities’, ‘Ready-Steady…Toddlers’ and ’Using the Rhyming Bible’. Some of the seminars encouraged me, affirming what we are doing and how we are developing links with other community groups. It also identified new ways of sharing the love of God in the town. I came back enthused and excited by what we could do. As well as seminars, there were also competitions where church groups show their skills, in different ways, to teach children and adults about God. Having watched these performances over the years, I decided to have a go myself, in the ventriloquist competition. It was really scary but I did not disgrace myself (I came third) and have been encouraged to have another go next year. Things can only get better (I hope!)!

It only now leaves me to wish you a Happy Christmas, (if you are reading this before the 25th December), and a Happy New Year.

Peter Freeman

Children and Families Worker

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