2 Messy Fiestas

“I found the Messy Fiesta event to be exciting and inspiring.

With remarkable joy and creativity, Christian worship/education was offered in an inviting, open-minded atmosphere, with wonderful intergenerational appeal. It has huge potential as a means for inviting and welcoming those who are spiritually hungry, but not attracted to a traditional way of doing church. We are delighted at the prospect of beginning Messy Church ministry at St. John’s, Thorold this Fall.” These words, from Rev. Cathie Crawford Browning following the Messy Fiesta (Messy Church workshop) on May 15th, capture the essence of Messy Church and the two Messy Fiestas held in April and May this Spring in Ontario. 

Messy Church is a fresh expression of church that is drawing families and children to learn about God, as they engage in a faith community in a new and exciting way. Messy Church was developed in the UK as a way of reaching families who weren’t part of the ‘traditional’ church or who due to their busy schedules were unable to attend Sunday worship. As the dynamics of our culture are in constant flux many parents have only the weekend to spend with their children and don’t want to spend it in traditional church while their children are in Sunday School. Messy Church aims to create the opportunity for adults and children to enjoy expressing their creativity, sit down together to eat a meal, experience worship and have fun within a church context, often midweek. Messy Church is a way to reach families who are not in our churches on Sundays.

Messy Church is a welcome alternative congregational approach that can stand side by side with a traditional Sunday morning congregation. It accommodates the needs of family life while being innovative and post modern.  It may resemble the early church groups with gatherings, discussions and a meal followed by short worship.” Annette Hoare, St. Alban’s Beamsville.

As co-presenter Rev. Nancy Rowe said, “Part of the format for the Messy Fiesta day was to do a Messy Church so that parish leaders could get a feel for what a Messy Church is like. Messy Church is aimed at young families, and certainly that is the nucleus of our Messy Church at St. George’s, Georgetown.   At first it seemed quite strange doing a Messy Church that was adults only, but the energy and spirit of Messy Church is infectious, no matter what the age, the workshop participants were able to enter into the uniqueness of Messy Church to experience the power of God renewing God’s Church. I left each   Messy Fiesta in awe of God’s on-going intrepid plan for us.”

Thanks to St. George’s, Georgetown (April 24th) and St. John the Evangelist, Thorold (May 15th) for hosting the Messy Fiestas and all the enthusiastic participants. For more information about Messy Church, contact me at ask@nas.net

Sue Kalbfleisch

Messy Church Regional Coordinator


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