The first free family fun afternoon ‘Messy Games” took place at Winterborne Stickland Sports Club in July 2016 as part of the benefice wide “Casting the Net” initiative, which was a 3 week festival to try and draw our rural communities together.
Due to the very positive feedback received following this first event, and by community request, “Messy Games” has now become a popular annual FREE family fun afternoon held each July at the Sports Club. There are a number of different outdoor games which both children and adults enjoy taking part in. The event is usually supported by Stickleberries Day Nursery who host a craft activities tent and the Winterborne Whitechurch Cubs and Scouts who help by supervising one of the games. The emphasis is on FREE family fun!
In 2018 we decided to have our first “Messy Easter” Craft Afternoon at the Sports Club where children and families enjoyed making Easter gardens, decorating eggs and biscuits, making Easter cards, and of course taking part in an Easter Egg Hunt!
In December we also held a “Messy Christmas” Craft Afternoon.
At each of these afternoons there is a Prayer Space available, which has been increasingly made use of by both children and adults.
All of these events are now held annually and are well supported by the local community and families from further afield! Check out the “What’s On” page of the website to find out when the next “Messy” event will be, you wouldn’t want to miss out on the fun!
Links with Stickleberries Day Nursery were initially established through the first “Messy Games” afternoon in July 2016, where staff from the nursery organised a craft activities tent.
Stickleberries then came into St Mary’s church in Stickland to help us create one of the prayer stations for National Prayer Weekend in September 2017. Following a request from the Nursery manager for closer links with St Mary’s church, a regular activities session was set up.
Monthly at St Mary’s Church
There is now an established format for these hour long monthly sessions. The theme for the month is introduced through a Bible story, followed by two or three craft activities and finishing with a 15-20 minute music slot (usually led by our organist) – with lots of joyful singing!
Some of the themes we have explored so far are Love – the love of God and loving each other, Noah’s Ark, Creation, Remembrance, as well as the children helping to create our Christmas Crib and Easter Garden…..and not forgetting the creation of Stig the Sea Monster scarecrow on the Village Green of course!
The children love coming into the church each month and always call it “our church” and we very often use some of their wonderful creations to produce displays for the church!
The newly formed Benefice Youth Group met in June 2019 at Stickland Church to explore “Trust” using material from the Urban Saints Energize plans.
We started the session with some fun games involving trusting others and challenging our perceptions of others. We then looked at a passage from Matthew where Jesus walked on the water and the disciples’ reaction to that.
Some great discussion followed and the young people then created prayer pebbles to end our session.
Monthly from September
Youth Group will be held monthly from September and we are very excited to see where this new venture might lead!!
The group leaders hold enhanced DBS checks and have attended several diocesan children and young people training events as well as the National Youth Ministry weekend each year.
Do get in touch if you’d like to know more about it.