Over the last four Messy Church events we've been looking at the story of Moses; from the secret baby until the long journey. It's been fun, as you'd expect from Messy Church.
Moses was born to an enslaved people, the Hebrews, and had to be hidden to survive. His mother put him in a basket and put the basket into a reed bed on the River Nile where the Egyptian king's, (pharaoh's) sister found the baby and named him Moses. Brought up in the royal household Moses had an affinity with the under-dog and when he saw a Hebrew slave being beaten, Moses struck out and killed the overseer. This deed was noticed and Moses fled into the wilderness where he found nomadic Hebrews and joined them.
The basket in the reeds, woven with the fears and hopes of Moses' mother, the dangerous crocodiles and some real reeds!
Here he lived for many years until one day he saw a bush that burned but didn't get consumed by the flames. He saw that and at the same time, heard a voice calling him back to Egypt to rescue the Hebrew slaves there. Moses argued with the voice against this but was persuaded to do as he was bid and that his brother Aaron would go too, as his spokesperson. The voice had been that of God.
Snakes and staffs were used by Moses as he led God's people away from the Egyptians. We always have a meal together and here's the pudding, a pyramid of profiteroles!The Egyptian pharaoh wasn't too happy about letting go the Hebrews but a series of disasters changed his mind. The Hebrews set off to their homeland of Canaan. Pharaoh changed his mind and set out to recapture the Hebrews but God wasn't having this! After guiding the Hebrews through the Reed Sea God brought huge waves of water crashing over the Egyptian chariots and ensured the safe escape of the Hebrews.
The disasters were all un-natural occurrences e.g. plagues of insects and of frogs. We made insects out of plasticine and pipe cleaners and made frogs for a frog race, sort of ...
You would think the Hebrews would have been grateful - but the moaned and groaned their way through the desert; so much so that God guided the people the long way round so that the moaners and groaners had died by the time their children reached Canaan and were glad to stop travelling. The Hebrews ended their long journey back in Canaan and gave thanks to God for their freedom.
This was wonderfully messy - footprints in the sand, bare feet and paint between your toes with the adults leading the way! There were rocks in the desert and so we made rock cakes - they tasted good too!
Also in the desert, the people had been quite quarrelsome amongst themselves and it got to the stage that they were so childish in their behaviour God gave them some basic rules for good living - ten words, the ten commandments. These ten words are still good for today.
What next - find out on June 26th at the next Messy Church...
The story of Moses can be found from the start of the the book of Exodus. Why do we do Messy Church? Not everyone learns and explores in the same way and so we use different ways to unpack the stories and lessons of the Bible. There is always a reading, in the form of a story, a teaching session, the different activities explore the story in different ways, prayer when we give thanks for what we've learned and for what we will be eating. There is little music as none of us are either musical or brave enough to lead! Fellowship is around the table as we eat. yes, it's different and not to for all, but neither is traditional worship. Both are worship - and that's what we each do, worship as best we can. Hallelujah, amen!
There were twenty two folk at Messy Church today! We explored activities around the story of Moses early years. Here are some photos of the afternoon. Thanks to all who made it possible; especially to the kitchen team who keep us all going with juice and teas and a wonderful meal.
34 people of various ages came along to enjoy the Christmas Party! There were games and a story, prayer before a lovely meal of party food. Everyone had a great time and it was good to remember why Christmas happens - Jesus birthday! Here are some photos.
Thank you to all who contributed in any way to today's Monthly Lunch run by Acharacle Parish Church - those who donated money, those who made soups and cakes, those who cooked bacon for the rolls, those who came and chatted.
£167 was raised and that goes to ensuring ministry continues in the area. That means that there is no ministry charge for funerals, baptisms or weddings (a donation to the organist and to cover the running costs of the church but no charge for the services of the minister nor for pastoral support). Messy Church can continue to be resourced from funds and the weekly running costs of the building are met.
Thank you again - God bless.
Today we were privileged to baptise Caleb. Baptism is, in part, a public recognition that a child or person is part of the church family. By that is meant the group of people that profess faith in Jesus. (There is a long theological explanation of this. Email me if you would like more details.) Sometime the ceremony is referred to as a christening. Baptism came from an established practice that was also part of the life experience of Jesus. Christening is from the giving of Christian names to those who were baptised and received a new name in Christ - their previous pagan name being replaced with a Christian name.
Part of the ceremony is the minister being able to introduce the baby to those gathered; usually by walking around while carrying the baby. Here's a picture of Caleb with one of his God-mothers.
On Saturday 16th the Gills opened their special garden to visitors. The rain came too but didn't put off people from being taken on guided tours of the plot. So much in a relatively small space! Join the tour by browing these pictures. Thank you so much for a splendid afternoon
Messy Church was fun - lots of activities such as bowing corn, headdresses, flour men, hieroglyphs and something else. Chicken salad then syrup sponge with custard. Why? It's great getting all generations together to explore the stories of the Bible. These stories hold truths that the people held to be important. With the story of Joseph, as with so many stories, this is of how through the messes we make God works to bring good.
God is working through Messy Church. There are all ages there exploring the story and having fun - and it doesn't matter what is your church, or non-church, background. All are welcome; from the baby in arms to the lady who is over 90, the Free Church family and the Catholic one - all are welcome.
Thanks to those who provided and made the meal we shared - chicken with salad, syrup sponge pudding with custard.
Next time we'll be thinking about Moses in Egypt - that's at the end of September.
These are - making the flour balloon brothers of Joseph and their stage, Egyptian headdresses and the corn bobbing up and down.
Last Sunday was the Peninsula Picnic. The Abernethy Trust at Kilmalieu hosted the Picnic, there was worship and the children were taken by the young leaders to activities. A great afternoon - thank you.
Mrs Ella Gill, Session Clerk at Acharacle Parish Church was installed as the next Moderator of the Presbytery of Lochaber. Congratulations Ella - have a good year.
Photos below are of Mrs Gill, the elders, minister and previous Moderator.
I regularly visit the nursery to tell Bible stories. When I arrived yesterday, the children were eating a warm and newly baked chocolate cake they'd make that morning for one little lad's birthday. Would I like a piece - it's chocolate! Why ask? Thank you to the nursery for such a wonderful delicious piece of cake - and a very happy birthday to the little lad.