‘Softly, softly’ discipleship

Published 28th January 2013 by lucy moore

Ruth Burrows and her team at Chichester St Pancras Messy Church have been treading grapes and bottling the wine! Definitely a team to go and visit when it tastes better. It takes time for wine to mature, but the new wine of families in this Messy Church is bubbling away in an exciting vintage all of its own, and it’s good to see the church is happy to sew new wineskins to contain it.
Ruth shared her thoughts on a year of Messy Church. She writes:
On a more general note, our Messy Church is going from strength to strength – we had a wonderful first birthday celebration and each Messy Church seems to be getting better and better. We are very lucky to have many students involved now and they really add enthusiasm, fun and life to our sessions – I believe it is helpful for them in their faith too! As well as all the crazy stuff, mess and silly songs, we had some wonderfully reflective times at our ‘Christingle Messy Church’ and ‘Messy Crib Service’ and are planning a ‘Messy Easter Morning’ on similar lines, with chances for reflection on Good Friday. And lots of people are showing a greater interest in finding out more – we are possibly planning a whole family ‘Messy Baptism’ in the near future for our longest serving Messy Church family – a mum and 2 boys want to get baptised!
Several people have started coming along on Sunday mornings, though we hadn’t expected this at all and after years of never having children or families in church, we are now having to rapidly adapt our Sunday morning services to provide for the children that are coming… fantastic! Also, one or two people have been on the Alpha course since coming to Messy and now moving on to the Christianity Explored course we are starting.
I really am blown away by the impact this is having on people’s lives and the speed at which God is working. Like you, I am a firm believer in not being ‘pushy’ with people but I was worried whether or how long it would take for a ‘softly softly’ approach to have an effect, but God has really worked in amazing ways through our team and I look forward to what he has planned for the future!

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