Posted by Peter Cranch

This year at Messy Church we’re basing our sessions on the book ‘True Story’ by Pete Brown. The second session teaches what God is like by looking at Jesus’ story of The Prodigal Son.

Welcome Plaques

The father in the story welcomes his son home, despite the son’s terrible treatment of his father – just as God welcomes repentant sinners. We made welcome plaques to hang on the door.

Party Poppers

When the son returned home the father threw a magnificent party. We made party poppers based on the idea in the video below. We used cardboard tubes instead of cups and filled them with small squares of tissue paper. This was a very popular activity!

Coin Cleaning

The son in the story took his father’s money and wasted it. We collected lots of copper coins and tested different household ingredients to see which was best for making the coins shiny! We gave people disposable gloves to wear. For some children this was their favourite activity and they did it several times!

Modelling Clay Pigs

We used modelling clay to make pigs. These were baked in the oven to harden them. We’ve found this modelling clay (Amazon link) works well and is not too expensive.

Dancing Son

We made little models of the son with a robe that could be put on him when he returned home. We hung each figure on elastic so he could ‘dance with joy’ as he was welcomed by his father. The figures had a bead for a head and limbs made from pipe cleaners.

Yucky Muddy Piggy Puddings

We made pigsty puddings. Each child was given a pastry case. They mixed a small amount of chocolate Angel Delight and added crushed biscuit and a pig sweet (Percy Pigs from Marks and Spencer!) They looked yukky but tasted great!

Cornflower Slime

On the theme of yukky muddiness, we mixed some cornflower and water (sometimes called oobleck) and put it in a tray with some plastic pots and toys.