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Brimbank gets messy at church

Brimbank gets messy at church

Brimbank gets messy at church

17 June 2019

People in the local Brimbank community are finding a place to connect and belong at Messy Church.

By Jessica Morris

Brimbank Salvos know church doesn’t always fit in a box. In fact, some people may even say it’s better messy. That’s why their new Messy Church plant is perfect for the growing community in Melbourne’s north-west.

“We found that people connecting with Brimbank through linking programs couldn’t always connect to Sunday services,” said Major Simon Damen, Corps Officer.

“It just worked better to have Messy Church on a Wednesday rather than Sunday. For some in our community, this is a time to have a good meal and to sit and talk with other people. Messy Church helps people to connect, reduce their isolation and fill a gap in their lives.”

Messy Church, which started earlier this year, caters to a growing community of locals who connected to the church initially through a variety of outreaches, like Mainly Music, or gift-wrapping at the local shopping centre. The service is becoming increasingly popular with young families.

An average of 30 people come to each Messy Church service, which includes a small worship team, some teaching, crafts for the kids and a fellowship meal.

Major Damen has seen attendees encounter God in a new way, making way for the large multicultural community in the area to pray for their family and friends overseas.

“We have found the message response time a very moving time where people have been able to place cares at the foot of the cross and pray a blessing over loved ones – to leave past hurts and negative things at the cross,” said Major Damen.

Thanks to a grant from the Australia Territory Innovation Funding initiative, Brimbank was able to set up a smaller, secondary worship area to cater for Messy Church. While the main worship hall seats about 300 people, the secondary space seats approximately 80, making it a more family-friendly environment for smaller gatherings.

“Receiving the grant was a great opportunity for us to set up this more intimate and connecting space, used not only for Messy Church but some of their other community gatherings such as Companion Club,” said Major Damen.

“The beauty of Messy Church is that it invites people in, whether they come through the church doors for the first time or are members looking for a place to serve. Messy church is helping people belong.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

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