Home Mission - Middleton Park
DURING the Home Mission meeting at Gildersome people agreed it would be good to hear stories from the different churches. Here’s a report and photos from Middleton Park Baptist Church in Leeds:-
Fun, food and food for thought!
Fun and food were on the menu when Middleton Park Baptist Church, Leeds, held a Children’s Activity Day at Easter.
Invitations were given to the local Brownies, KidzKlub children, and the Sunday Club children.
Activities included making an Easter collage, a drama depicting the Easter story, making buns and icing them with an Easter symbol, and making an Easter garden (in a tin bath!) which was displayed in the garden where passers by could see it, with the words ‘He died, He rose, He lives’.
Sylvia Polson writes: “A lot of planning and preparation had gone into the day, so we looked with some trepidation as the previous week produced snow, snow and more snow.
“The Saturday morning was bleak, with snow drifts, and we cleared the paths on the church drive ‘in faith’. We all half expected that it would have to be cancelled, but we decided it would go ahead, and trusted God to send the children to us.
“God did send them, and we welcomed 25 children that day. The children and adults went home happy, although tired. A couple of lessons were learned for improving it if we were to do it again, but over all we felt God blessed the day so much.”
Middleton Park Baptist Church is the home of two community groups - The Dynamite Dance Group and the Slimmers’ Group. Sylvia says: “We wanted to share the Easter story with them in some way. Some of us visited the dance group during their practice session and shared an Easter Bible reading, and gave out comics telling the Easter story and mini chocolate eggs.
“We also visited the Slimmers’ Group at the start of one of their sessions and again shared a reading. However, we thought it best not to take mini-eggs, so we took a basket of fruit! We also gave them each an Easter tract. Both groups seemed to appreciate our visit.”
On Good Friday the church was open for quiet prayer in the morning, then ‘Churches Together in Middleton and Belle Isle’ had arranged a Walk of Witness, each church carrying a cross and taking a different route through Middleton, meeting at noon at the main shops at Middleton Circus for an open air meeting. In the evening there was an informal Communion Service, which was very well attended.
A wooden cross had been placed at the front of the church during Lent and each week at the end of the service, the Sunday Club children shared a part of the Easter story and placed their art-work on to the cross. Post-it-notes for prayer requests were also left available, and several people made use of these.
The cross and stage were cleared for Good Friday, except for a purple cloth and a crown of thorns, and then on Easter Day this was replaced with a display of daffodils, symbolising new life and the resurrection.
Sylvia adds: “After the service we had lunch together, prepared by church members and making use of the facilities freely given by our neighbouring Anglican church at St Cross. We then had an Easter bonnet parade, with accompanying appropriate songs! Later in the afternoon we had an old-fashioned afternoon tea, with sandwiches and fancy cakes.
“It was a long and busy day, and was a true team effort. So many people contributed and gave of themselves, and the Lord greatly blessed the day.”