What is Messy Church?

Written by MiriamSpall on Friday, March 9, 2018 - 10:36

Whether you are religious or not, Messy Church is an attractive offer to families with young children that are opened to the idea of participating in Christian themed activities. I first found out about it, a few years ago when my son was three.  As a mum of a very active toddler, I was always in the look out for local places where he could play with other children and I could have a cup of tea whilst he explored and played with different toys.

I found their colourful logo outside a local church especially appealing as there is a warmth associated to the word “church”, which is of friendliness, kindness and acceptance. That was  exactly what I was looking for after sleepless nights and days full of toddler tantrums which left me feeling quite fragile. As I walked in I was immediately welcomed by one of the organizers who explained how we could get involved and what there was to do.

There were a few tables laid out in the hall, where children could choose a christian inspired craft activity.  There was also a room full of toys that we could use if we needed to and a baby area. When the activities were over, they cleared the hall and we all sat down for a meal which included jacket potatoes with different fillings, pizza, salad and garlic bread.  For dessert there was a selection of yoghurt, fruit and yummy cupcakes!. Finally, families were invited to join an interactive brief service in the chapel. This was all FREE of charge.

Messy Church  was created in 2004 by a group at St Wilfrid's in Cowplain near Portsmouth who felt that even though they had the resources and a lot to offer, they were not reaching out to children and local families. Their values are Christ-centred, All-age, Creativity, Hospitality and Celebration.

Depending on the location, Messy church meets at different times of the week, Sunday mornings, afternoons, Saturday mornings and afternoons, weekdays after school too. Most Messy Churches take place once a month and last for about 2 hours.

Messy Churches in Ipswich

Messy Church at Stoke Green Baptist Church

  • Stoke Green Baptist Church Halifax Road Ipswich, Suffolk IP2 8RE
  • Email: brendamclark@me.com
  • Tel. 01473 682450
  • For more information visit their website
  • Saturday mornings from 10.00 -13.00

The Salvation Army Ipswich

  • 121 Bramford Road Ipswich, Suffolk IP1 2LW
  • Rachel Harper
  • Email: rach85_ips@yahoo.co.uk
  • Tel: 07897 612740
  • Every 5th Sunday in the month from 4-6pm
  • For more information visit their website

Messy Church at Ipswich Citadel Salvation Army

  • Ipswich Citadel Salvation Army,558 Woodbridge Road Ipswich, Suffolk IP4 4PH
  • Suzanne Cook
  • Email: merv.cook@ntlworld.com
  • Tel. 01394-284441
  • Every 3rd Sunday Bi-monthly
  • For more information visit their website

Messy Church at Colchester Road Baptist Church

  • 75 Colchester Road Ipswich, Suffolk IP4 4ST
  • Ben Wale
  • Email: admin@crbc.org.uk
  • Tel. 01473290115
  • Every Saturday Bi- monthly
  • For more information visit their website

Messy Toddler Church at All Saints, Kesgrave

  • All Saints Church, Kesgrave, Main Road Kesgrave IP5
  • Robin Spittle
  • Email: robinspittle@btinternet.com
  • Tel. 07843 686500
  • Sessions take place on a Tuesday morning from 10.00am -11.30am
  • For more information visit their website

St. Mary @Stoke Messy Church

  • St. Mary at Stoke Church Hall, Stoke Street Ipswich Suffolk IP2 8DA
  • Email: rev.roberthinsley@gmail.com
  • Tel. 01473 8071198
  • Friday 3.30pm (2nd Friday each Month)
  • For more information visit their website

Messy Church at Capel Methodist Church

  • Capel Methodist Church,The Street, Capel St Mary Ipswich IP9 2EQ
  • Email: Maggie3@btinternet.com
  • Tel. 01473 310766
  • Held every 6 weeks from 3.30-5.30pm on Saturday afternoons.
  • For more information visit their website

Messy Churches in Bury St Edmunds

Messy Church at All Saints Bury St Edmunds

  • All Saints Park Road Bury St Edmunds Suffolk IP33 3QW
  • Email: katieorchard@btinternet.com
  • Tel. 01284 769897
  • It runs monthly on the first Wednesday morning of the month during our Parent and Toddler group. 9.30  - 11.00
  • For more information visit their website

Messy Church @ Ingham

  • The Street, Ingham Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP31 1NH
  • Email: lesley.norburn@btinternet.com
  • Tel. 0791 7005397
  • Messy church runs "approximately quarterly" on Sundays at Ingham Church from 2pm - 4pm
  • For more information visit their website

Messy Church at Trinity Methodist Church, Bury St Edmunds

  • Trinity Methodist Church Brentgovel St Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP33 1EB
  • Email: 01284760820
  • Tel. suerob.m@gmail.com
  • Messy church runs monthly, 2nd Sunday, 4pm - 6pm.
  • For more information visit their website

 For more fun ideas take a look at our Family Guide here


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Where To Take Our Children