After a stimulating morning with Messy Church leaders in Worcester on Saturday, somebody asked if there is an evaluation proforma for Messy Church. I emailed this back in return and will give it further thought in case I decide there is a less woolly answer.Or if someone gives me one!
Evaluation – I’m a little nervous of hard and fast questions as they might imply there is one way of ‘succeeding’ in church and that simply isn’t the case with Messy Church. Also the things which make it a success (people meeting Jesus, relationships, changing attitudes, noticing individuals, making people feel welcome) are unmeasurable by any statistical means! How do you evaluate the benefit of a chance comment or a smile?
The objective topics that are worth considering are:
Is our Messy Church sufficiently focused on the needs of people in our own area / on our specific resources / our team?
Is our welcome effective?
Do we provide activities for all ages and all learning styles?
Do the craft activities provide links to the theme?
Is the celebration accessible and relevant to all ages and learning abilities?
Do we provide opportunities to meet Jesus in every stage of Messy Church?
Is the team confident to share God’s story and their own story?
Is everyone safe?
I think another starting point may be adapting one or two of the ideas in the blog of 27 Nov, where we try to give people a voice about discipleship. I think these formats would give you lots of starting points to change to your specific needs.
It’s also worth saying that when the DVD and accompanying materials are out (in April 11), they will provide an ongoing evaluation and ways to improve your Messy Church in the specific subject areas.
I hope that’s helpful, even if it doesn’t provide a black and white formula… all a bit messier than that!