Monday, 17 December 2012

Merry Messy Christmas

Yesterday saw a marathon merry messy Christmas special - 3 hours of festive fun with lots of highlights. St Nicolas Church Choir made a wonderful guest appearance and treated us to come carols whilst we did craft acitivites and face-painting. Then there were some games during which we ate quite a lot of chocolate!
Nearly everyone was involved in telling the Christmas story - a very messy nativity with a bumper crop of shepherds and angels and a very stylish star! And we danced... and danced some more!
Gingerbread nativity!
Boosting our energy levels was a lovely buffet tea accompanied by mulled wine and fruit punch. There was also the most amazing spread of cakes, mince pies and chocolate-coated marshmallows. The sweet centre-piece was a gingerbread nativity - it seemed too good to eat... but we managed it!
Thanks to team members who worked behind the scenes to make it such a fun event and to everyone for coming along.
Over the next week we have a few special services to which you are most welcome:
Sunday 23 December, 6pm - Festival of Lesson & Carols
Christmas Eve, 4pm - Family Carols & Crib Service
Christmas Eve, 11.30pm - First Communion of Christmas
Christmas Day, 10.30am - Family Communion
The next Messy Church St Nicolas will be on Sunday 27 January 2013.
Until then we wish you a very happy, peaceful and blessed Christmas and send you our love and prayers for the New Year.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Christmas Special

This Sunday... 16th December is our Messy Church Christmas Special. Come along at 4pm for craft activities, games, story-telling, music, barn-dancing, carols and festive buffet.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

The Big Advent-ure!

November's Messy Church was as buzzy, busy and big as ever so thank you to everyone who came along to make it such fun.

It is now Advent - the time of preparation and excited waiting as we anticipate the coming of Jesus.

We have our Messy Church Christmas Special in just over a week - on Sunday 16 December, 4-7pm. It is an hour longer than normal because we have so many fun things to pack in. As usual there will be a few craft activities to try - come along at the start to have the opportunity to have a go at these. Then we'll have some party games. There will be some barn dancing thanks to Sally-Ann and her band; don't worry if you haven't tried it before - it is great fun and there wil be explanations so that all who want to be involved can be.

Of course there will be a special story-time as we think about the wonderful events of the first Christmas - feel free to come dressed as a nativity character and get involved!

There will be festive food and drinks to sustain all of this activity and we'll round the evening off with a couple of carols.

If you can't be with us on that evening there will be a special family-focused Carol and Crib Service on Christmas Eve at 4pm. It is always a popular event and a lovely way to lead into Christmas Day after the busy time of preparation.

Plus on Christmas Day itself there will be a short family service at 10.30am to celebrate Jesus' birth - it sounds obviously really but what could be more appropriate!

Do join us for any or all of these events or get in touch via our website  if you would like more information

Tuesday, 13 November 2012


That is the standard response to fireworks and we certainly enjoyed our Messy Church fireworks at our Light Party in October. Thank you to Nick for organising them.
And thank you to everyone else for making it such a fantastic evening - wonderful fancy dress, great activities, an enlightening story time and some delicious food (as always) including some very messy marshmallows dipped in melted chocolate - thanks to Marilyn and the busy catering team!

Our next Messy Church is on Sunday 25 November and then our Christmas Special is on Sunday 16 December and is a slightly longer event with plenty of festive activities. Hope to see you then.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012


Did you know that Halloween is really All Hallows Eve - the evening before the Christian festival of All Hallows? And did you know that All Hallows is also known as All Saints? It is a celebration of all the saints, known and unknown - the heroes and heroines of Christian faith.

We'll be recapturing something of that original meaning at our Messy Church on Sunday 28 October with our very own Light Party. There will be Messy Church craft activities as usual plus some festive challenges. Children are invited to come in fancy dress - the theme is super-heroes or super-heroines or something light-related - but nothing nasty or scarey please as this is a celebration of light not darkness!

We'll be having a light-themed story time followed by a delicious dinner and some after-dinner entertainment.

So do come along and join us from 4pm on Sunday 28 October.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Back to Messy Church

Each September there is a special Sunday called Back to Church Sunday which is all about the Church worldwide sending a big invitation to anyone who wants to come along to a service - perhaps if you haven't been along for a few months, years or ever!

This year Back to Church Sunday is 30th September... but why wait until then?

Messy Church will be taking place on Sunday 23rd September and new-comers and old-timers are always welcome.

September will mark the start of a new term of course but it is also the time when we traditionally celebrate Harvest. Messy Church will reflect this in crafts and story time but there is also an invitation to bring along some Harvest produce - namely some tinned and packet food that will be donated to the local Foodbank.

We hope we'll see you soon!

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

What is your favourite sandwich?

That is one of the 'take-home' questions for August's Messy Church. My choice?
Well quite a few years ago on a trip to America I had an amazing filled bagel - it had proper corned beef, sauerkraut, melted swiss cheese, and salad wih a Russian dressing. I think there was also some gherkin involved - it was perfection!

However my real favourite is cheese, tomato and sald cream. It has to be mature cheddar and full of flavour vine tomatoes to make it really special... there's nothing quite like it.
Where would we be without bread?

So what is your favourite sandwich?
Looking forward to the comments and picking up some good ideas!


Website news

St Nicolas Church, host of Messy Church, has a new website... and very smart it is too. Big thanks to Ruth, one of our Messy Church team, for the wonderful website makeover. Check it out here

Monday, 20 August 2012

Bank Holiday Messy Church

Although it is a holiday weekend we are still having an August Messy Church on Sunday 26th and regardless of the weather we're planning a picnic tea! If you have any picnic treats that you'd like to contribute please bring them along but we'll be providing lots of lovely food too.

Our focus for August is bread! Jesus once said 'I am the bread of life' - quite a strange thing to say. We'll be doing some craft activities with bread to try and help us understand what Jesus meant and our storytime will focus on a giant picnic that Jesus had with his disciples and with crowds of people who came to listen to him speak.

We look forward to seeing you soon.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

This little light of mine

On Sunday we decided to go for a picnic in Stratford upon Avon. On the way into the town I noticed a sign about the Olympic torch relay and it transpired that the torch was due to arrive within the next hour so we parked the car and joined the road-side crowds to see it pass through. It was quite a wait and with waning enthusiasm the assembled masses resorted to cheering for anything and anybody who passed by - stray cyclists,  embarrassed motorists looking for somewhere to park, police outriders, etc!

Eventually the torch did arrive but not before we had seen a minor procession of sponsor vehicles and a minibus of runners and spare torches! How many torches are in existence? There were about 10 on the bus and presumably some had already been used that day... and that was just for one day!

I had naively imagined that there was 'a torch' and that it would arrive in the Olympic stadium a few weeks from now, perhaps looking slightly worse for wear but having travelled the country and been held by many sweaty hands and viewed by thousands of people. Apparently not.

Anyway, that is a rather long-winded link to our Messy Church in July which will have an Olympic theme. We'll be making our own version of the torch, fashioning medals, designing team kits and getting messy in a host of other ways.

Hope you'll join us on Sunday 22 July, 4-6pm.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012


June's Messy Church was one of the most fun events we've had. Amazingly the weather was ok for our barbecue and we really enjoyed some great food - thanks again to butcher Steve Mellor, Coleshill Road, for providing us with such excellent sausages and burgers... and of course to Nick for cooking it!
Food aside the day was particularly special because we had some great Father's Day challenges including making a tower from spaghetti and marshmallows (as shown in these pictures) and creating a parachute and cradle for a raw egg that would protect it on a treacherous decent from the church tower!

There was just a hint of competitiveness when, towards the end of the afternoon, we gathered outside to find out the results of the challenges and specifically to see what would become of the eggs. Pete bravely ascended the tower with a bag full of eggs and ingenious egg-protection devices and then the eggs began to fall. (You can just about make out the black bin-bag parachute in this picture.) Much to our surprise some of the parachutes worked and the eggs, rather than plummeting to earth at great speed, actually floated rather gracefully to the ground. In the end about 4 eggs survived. Trophies were given to the winners of each challenge category and sweets all round for effort! 
Other highlights from the day include...
-  the creation of some splendid family crests
- significant engineering prowess being exhibited as dads made elastic powered cars from CDs, cardboard, piping and elastic bands
- plenty of delicious cakes
- a game of footie in the courtyard
- lots of brainy people showing that they are very good at picture quizzes

If you missed out don't worry because our next Messy Church is only a few weeks away and it has a special Olympic theme - join us on Sunday 22 July, 4-6pm.

Saturday, 16 June 2012

It's a challenge...

As I blog my husband is using our dining table as a workbench in order to prep some of the items needed for tomorrow's Messy Church challenges. Specifically he is sawing some plastic piping that will be transformed in the axels of some elastic powered cars! Intrigued? Come along tomorrow at 4pm and make your own and see how you fare racing it against others.

Or have a go at constructing a tower with some rather strange building materials. There are plenty of activities to bemuse and challenge and if all that gets a little too much grab and beer and a burger and warm your hands at the barbecue! Come rain or shine Messy Church will be action-packed so do join us.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Messy June Special

We're only a few days away from June's Messy Church which is going to be a special event, not least of all because we may be barbecuing in the rain!

Aside from that we're hoping to make it into a really family-orientated afternoon and a chance for Messy Church regulars to bring some friends along for a bit of a taster. As it is also Father's Day it might be a good opportunity for dads and grandpas to give Messy Church a try - we have some special activities and challenges lined up for you. Here is what the afternoon has in store:

4pm - Arrivals: There will be some drinks available (including beer for any dads who need a Father's day treat/incentive!) Then there will be some challenges and activities to take part in, ideally in small groups or families. These include creating a family crest/shield, a quiz and making an elastic band car.

4.30pm - BBQ: Time to grab some food from the barbecue and consider your strategy for the next set of activities!

5pm - Activities: Another selection of activities (mildly competitive) to keep you busy including the second part of the quiz, constructing some towers and making an egg cradle!

5.30ish - Ice-cream and results: If you have any space after the BBQ you might like an ice-cream whilst you watch the results of the challenges. Whose elastic band car will go the furthest, whose tower is the tallest, and whose cradle will protect their egg when it falls from the church tower?

6pm - We can't promise to be finished by 6pm  - this Messy Church may run a little late but as you can see we have a fun programme lined up. We hope you'll join us!

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Angel of the north (aisle)

Here is our very own angel of the north... north aisle that is! It is the latest Messy Church banner and it is on display in the church building hanging against a pillar in the north aisle. It looks great and really makes an impact.
We made parts of the banner during April's Messy Church and then it was carefully pieced together last week. If you look closely you may be able to see your handiwork!
Have a proper look at the next Messy Church on Sunday 27 May.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

April showers...

We've just had a rather impressive rainstorm. In fact I think I even heard some thunder and witnessed a flash of lightening. It is certainly not beach weather which is a bit of a shame because tomorrow at Messy Church we'll be creating our own beach for a sandcastle activity.

It is not recorded in the Bible, but I wonder if Jesus ever played in the sand on the edge of the Sea of Galilee? My memory of being there about 20 years ago is that it is more rocks than sand but I like to think that Jesus skimmed a few stones whilst cooking breakfast on the beach for his disciples.

And that is one of the stories we'll be looking at tomorrow; Jesus meeting his disciples on the shore of Galilee, after the resurrection. They were out fishing at night and from the boat they spotted him in the early morning light at the water's edge. When they reached the shore they discoved that he had breakfast sorted... and a lot more besides. Check it out for yourself in John 21.

So tomorrow there will be some fishy activities, things to do on the beach and things to identify by touch. Of course we'll have our usual story-time plus a delicious pasta dinner - plenty to go round so do feel free to bring a friend.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Early Easter Egg-citement!

Ok Easter Day may still be a couple of weeks away but we are have an early Easter Special at Messy Church St Nicolas, Nuneaton, this Sunday - 25th March.

From 4pm there will be an array of activities to help us explore what we celebrate at Easter. There will be some things to do that remind us of Jesus having a special meal with his friends on the night before he died. Other activities focus on Good Friday and Easter Day... some even include eggs!

Early arrivers will get to top their own pizzas - our own variation on unleavened bread - and those who bring their collecting cards and have 5 or more stickers (including March's) will get a mini chocolate egg.

There will be tea, coffee and squash a-plenty plus the usual mixture of chilling and chatting, creating, celebrating and chomping! We hope that you can join us.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Coming up...

From Eden to Eternity, performed by Saltmine Theatre Company is coming to St Nicolas, Nuneaton on Sunday 1 April (Palm Sunday). It is billed as 'the story of everything' and invites you to see the Bible brought to life on stage, journeying through tragedy and tears, music and mirth, serpents and salvation.

See the posters for more details or enquire at Messy Church. Tickets can be bought at the Parish Office 02476344553.

Messy February

This month's Messy Church will take place on Sunday 26 February. Come and take part in a pancake obstacle course, wrap up some Easter choccies, be artistic with some bread and creative with sand!

We'll be finding out a little more about Jesus growing up and thinking about some Lent challenges. We have a free gift for every family too!

Plus, of course, there is the usual mixture of story and song, all rounded off with a delicious family meal.

We hope to see you soon!

Friday, 20 January 2012

Thank you

Big thanks to Sainsburys and CoOp Nuneaton for their kind donations towards Messy Church - oranges (for christingles) and general groceries!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Our banner

During our first three Messy Church events (September - November) we made a banner together. Here is the final result. It is hanging in St Nicolas Church, Nuneaton accompanied by an explanation of what each part represents - come and have a look!


Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Messy New Year!

Happy New Year.

What do cress, scrolls, tents and oranges have in common? They'll all be features of our craft activities at Messy Church in just over a week's time. With Christmas already a distant memory, the St Nicolas Team are gearing up for a messy 2012 and are almost ready for a a full programme of creativity on Sunday 22 January (4-6pm).

The event is all about 'growing' and 'journeying', plus there will be the chance to some den building! If that all sounds a bit obscure our focal story will be about Jesus as a boy and what happened to him when he went on a journey with his family.

We'll also be thinking more about Jesus growing up with the help of some Christingles or Christ-lights. If you don't know what they are, all the more reason to come along and have a go at making one and then light it for our story time.

To continue with our journeying theme we'll also be having a picnic tea - bring a travel rug if you have one!

See you soon.