The aim of ‘Buggies and Brunch’ was to provide a Sunday service that was much more accessible to the parents and carers who attend our mums and toddlers group – many of whom have little or no connection with church. We felt that the key thing was to make people feel relaxed and welcome.
Space was made at the front of the church for the families, with some books and toys available and the service was geared around our visitors. Our pastor told the story of the lost sheep in an interactive way and engaged everyone. Then some children from the Sunday School sang a couple of songs.
The service was much shorter than normal (45 minutes as opposed to 90) and the brunch was served immediately afterwards. We kept the food very simple – cheese and biscuits, fruit, croissants and Danish pastries, etc., and we had a diferent team in church who dealt with the catering so that we could chat to the parents.
By way of follow-up we gave out ‘visitors’ bags’ which had a book (The Lost Sheep), some sweets, etc. and an invitation to Sunday School, Mums’ Bible Study and other family-geared church activities.
The comments from the church folk and our visitors were all very positive, but one thing I think we could have done better was to choose more traditional hymns, which our visitors might have known and joined in with. Anyway, it was a great success and one which we hope to repeat over the coming year.
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