Hope Journey Sharing Parables at Greasby Infant School

HOPE JOURNEY SHARING PARABLES

was a joy to visit Greasby Infant School on Thursday 1st July to deliver Sharing Parables to 60 children and 5 staff from F2.  This was our first visit into schools this year and we were very blessed with dry weather as we held the event in the outdoor play space.  

Following the welcome and introduction

  1. We read the story of The Lost Son from the bible. A parable is a story Jesus told to explain his teaching to us. We talked about feelings – how the various characters felt at different times in the story and why their emotions changed.  Very  importantly we looked at how we can all make wrong choices but God always forgives us if we are truly sorry for what we have done and aim to put it right.  The children made paper plate faces – a smiling face on one side and a sad face on the other – and used the paper plate faces to retell the story to us

2. The puppets shared a modern day version of the story.  A boy wanted to go to a disco but dad had said no.  However he sneaked out and went off with his friends and had a great time.  However he woke his dad up when he got home so his dad found out what he had done.  However dad did forgive him because he loved him so much.  Just as our Father God loves us and will forgive us too.  The children made peg puppets to take home to use to retell the story to their families

3. We presented a monologue, from dad’s point of view, again exploring how sad he was when the son asked for his inheritance and left home seeking a better life.  But how he rejoiced when the son returned home.  Sometimes we can wander away from God, but He is always ready to welcome us back too.  The children then made scoobies with different shaped beads

Square = someone we rely on, and who supports us

Round = somebody it is good to be around (friend, teacher, family member)

Heart = somebody who takes care of us

Star = a superstar in our life

We all enjoyed learning about how God loves us, takes care of us and we can trust Him to be our superstar and very special friend forever.

We are looking forward to welcoming all the children and staff into church again for another exciting programme of Hope Journey events next year

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Hope Journey Sharing Parables with Brookdale Primary School

HOPE JOURNEY SHARING PARABLES

This week what welcomed 30 children and 3 staff from F2 (4-5 year olds) Brookdale Primary School into our sanctuary to share the Parable of the Lost Son (the Prodigal Son)

Following the welcome and introduction

  1. We read the story of The Lost Son from the bible. A parable is a story Jesus told to explain his teaching to us. We talked about feelings – how the various characters felt at different times in the story and why their emotions changed.  Very  importantly we looked at how we can all make wrong choices but God always forgives us if we are truly sorry for what we have done and aim to put it right.  The children made paper plate faces – a smiling face on one side and a sad face on the other – and used the paper plate faces to retell the story to us

2. The puppets shared a modern day version of the story.  A boy wanted to go to a disco but dad had said no.  However he sneaked out and went off with his friends and had a great time.  However he woke his dad up when he got home so his dad found out what he had done.  However dad did forgive him because he loved him so much.  Just as our Father God loves us and will forgive us too.  The children made peg puppets to take home to use to retell the story to their families

Puppets tell a modern day version of the Parable of the Lost Son

Square = someone we rely on, and who supports us

3. We presented a monologue, from dad’s point of view, again exploring how sad he was when the son asked for his inheritance and left home seeking a better life.  But how he rejoiced when the son returned home.  Sometimes we can wander away from God, but He is always ready to welcome us back too.  The children then made scoobies with different shaped beads

Square = someone we rely on, and who supports us

Round = somebody it is good to be around (friend, teacher, family member)

Heart = somebody who takes care of us

Star = a superstar in our life

Children listen to dad telling them his story

We all enjoyed learning about how God loves us, takes care of us and we can trust Him to be our superstar and very special friend forever.

We are looking forward to Sharing Parables with Greasby Infant School next week

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Hope Journey Explore

Hope Journey Explore

This week we shared Hope Journey Explore via Microsoft Teams with 61 children at Greasby Junior School and 28 children at Brookdale Primary School on Thursday 27th May.  I am grateful to the Circuit Team for their knowledge and support

Following my welcome and introduction, we shared four workshops

  1. Explore – using images and starting with our own church, we looked at various artifacts and furniture usually found in churches and identified what each was and what we use them for.  This included the Bible, pulpit, lectern, baptismal font/baptistry, communion table, hymn book, organ/keyboard etc.  This facilitated explanations about denominations, the history of the bible, baptism and celebration of communion.  We then looked at the development of the church and, despite some differences, we all come from one root.
The Cross as a symbol of the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ

2. Holy Books – which focussed on the Bible – structure, Old Testament, New Testament, gospels/epistles, various versions etc and compared the Bible with the Qur’an and Torah.  The children asked the most amazing questions eg how old the bible is? When and how did different versions develop?  Did they use a quill to write it?  How has the same version carried on?  They also asked How did Jesus knew he was going to be killed?  We then explained the Trinity.

The Bible is Christians’ Holy Book

3. Signs and symbols – after a fun quiz looking at company logos, we examined the meaning behind various signs and symbols.  In particular we talked about the Cross, ICHTHUS, the dove, a crown of thorns and a triquetra.  We compared the Cross to the Star of David (Judaism) and the Crescent Moon (Islam) before asking the children to design a symbol shield for themselves

ICHTHUS – The greek letters mean Jesus Christ Gods’ Son Saviour

4. Prayer – We asked Why pray? Who do we pray to? Where can you pray? What do you pray about?  We watched a video of several children answering those questions.  We explained ACTS, the Lords Prayer and introduced a holding cross, before listening to Sir Cliff Richard singing the Millennial Prayer – The Lords prayer.  We concluded prayer is taking with God, and we can pray to God at any time, in any place. Children were encouraged to write their own prayers using TSP – Thank you, Sorry and Please if they find it helpful.

The dove is a symbol of the Holy Spirit and of peace

We have displayed some of the children’s work for your enjoyment and hope you will come along to admire their work during the half term break

The Triquetra symbolises the Trinity – God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit

Thank you to Brookdale and Greasby Junior School for joining us at Hope Journey again

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Hope Journey Cross Factor with Brookdale Primary School

Hope Journey Cross Factor with Brookdale Primary School

It was a joy to be able to share another Cross Factor with 29 Year 5 children and 2 staff at Brookdale Primary School on Wednesday 14th April (via Google Meet).

The morning included

  • the Easter Story using a jig saw puzzle, which puts Jesus at the heart of the cross.  We discussed the Last Supper on Maundy Thursday, The garden of Gethsemane, how Jesus was arrested and taken to the high priests house, before being taken to Pilate who ‘washed his hands of the affair’, Good Friday and Easter Sunday, following which the children designed a storyboard about what we were really celebrating at Easter
  • A look at some crosses from around the world (Roman, Crucifix, Palm, Celtic, Salvadorian) and why we share Palm crosses on Palm Sunday.  The children designed their own cross depicting scenes of the Easter story
  • a Roman Soldier telling us his experience of being in Jerusalem during Holy Week and how he felt when being told to go and arrest Jesus – whom he believed to be a good man who had performed miracles and healed people.  He was saddened when they crucified Jesus and shocked and delighted to meet an angel at the tomb who said Jesus was alive.  The children imagined being that Centurion and wrote a letter to a friend Maximus to tell him what had happened
  • We thought about how some things can look dead – but are brought back to life – like a bulb before it grows into a beautiful flower and a chrysalis before it becomes a pretty butterfly.  Christians believe that Jesus rose again and is alive and with us today and every day.  We discussed what we may like to change in our own lives, in our community and in the world and the children wrote their thoughts on leaves which were glued onto a tree, demonstrating renewal of life

The children received 3 gifts from Greasby Methodist Church

Resurrection Rhyme (Bible Society)
  1. The Journey through Holy Week as a take home leaflet t(see above) so that the children could colour the images whilst they shared the story with families
  2. All about Easter – a Resurrection Rhyme, published by the Bible Society this year.
  3. A Palm Cross – with an explanation of the significance of these crosses for Christians
Significance of the Palm Cross

We are very blessed that our virtual Hope Journeys have taken place this year but looking forward to when we can welcome the children and staff back into church again

 Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Annual Report April 2020-March 2021

Please find attached a copy of the Annual Report for April 2020 – March 2021 as promisedhttps://greasbymethodistchurch.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Annual-Report-2020-21-Final-10.pdf

Please do take time to read the report and praise God for the many blessings we have received throughout what has been a challenging year and pray for wisdom and guidance as we develop our Mission Plan for Greasby Methodist Church 2021-23

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey Cross Factor with Greasby Junior School

Hope Journey Cross Factor with Greasby Junior School

What a joy to be able to share Cross Factor with 64 Year 5 children and 4 staff at Greasby Junior School on Monday 22nd March via Google Meet

Cross Factor aimed to complement the Ecumenical Assemblies Team videoed assembly entitled ‘Easter in a Nutshell’, which highlighted the death and the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.  We looked at the Easter Story using a jig saw puzzle, which puts Jesus at the heart of the cross.  We discussed the Last Supper on Maundy Thursday, The garden of Gethsemane, how Jesus was arrested and taken to the high priests house, before being taken to Pilate who washed his hands of the affair, Good Friday and Easter Sunday, following which children designed a storyboard about what we are really celebrating at Easter.  This work is currently displayed in the foyer at church

We also looked at some crosses from around the world (Roman, Crucifix, Palm, Celtic, Salvadorian) and why we share Palm crosses on Palm Sunday.  Some children designed their own cross depicting scenes of the resurrection of Christ.  This wonderful work is also on display at church.

Significance of the Palm Cross

We were able to share 3 gifts from Greasby Methodist Church

  1. The Journey through Holy Week as a take home leaflet so that the children could colour the images whilst they shared the story with families
  2. All about Easter – a Resurrection Rhyme, published by the Bible Society this month.  This included a special Easter blessing from us all at Greasby Methodist Church
  3. A Palm Cross – with an explanation of the significance of these crosses for Christians
Resurrection Rhyme (Bible Society)

The next Cross Factor for Year 5 children at Brookdale Primary will take place on Wednesday 14th April. 

Whilst we remain grateful for the technology which has facilitated our Hope Journeys this year, we do look forward to when we are able to welcome the children into our church again for more interactive learning sessions.

 Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Hope Journey Epiphany – Journey with the Kings

Hope Journey Epiphany – Journey with the Kings

What a joy to be able to share Epiphany – Journey with the Kings with Year 1 children at Brookdale Primary School and Greasby Infant School this week using Microsoft Teams

We continue to deliver an adapted programme so this time, we delivered Journey to School maps for the children to prepare prior to the event and we are grateful to both schools for facilitating this




Team works at a social distance – very different from our normal practice!

Following my welcome we

  • talked about all the things we come across on our journey to school, in order to create the context of journeying
  • Introduced my three ‘very special friends’ who had travelled a long, long way to share their story
  • Watched the puppet sketch of the three magi retelling their experiences of travelling and meeting the baby Jesus
  • We talked about the significance of gold, frankincense and myrrh as gifts to the future King
  • and about gifts which would be suitable to give to a baby and what we can give Jesus as our gift (being kind, looking after each other eg helping someone who falls over, sharing toys and sweets, donating to FoodBank, even helping parents by keeping our bedroom tidy!)
  • The children wrote or drew their gift on a star whilst we listened to and sang Our God is a Great Big God and Shine from the Inside out
  • And just as the kings changed their direction, we committed ourselves to being the kind of people God wants us to be
Display of work in foyer

Some of the children’s’ work is displayed in the foyer, please do call in and admire the wonderful artwork when you are passing

God Became like Me (Scripture Union)

During the plenary the children told us what they had committed to on the star.  We gave the children gifts too – a story book God Became Like Me (Scripture Union) and an Epiphany prayer card to share with the family at home. 

Our next Hope Journey is Cross Factor (Easter story) which will take place in March when we look forward to welcoming Year 5 children from Brookdale Primary School and Greasby Junior School

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Hope Journey Meet The Characters

Hope Journey Meet The Characters

This week we shared Meet The Characters via Microsoft Teams with a class of 30 Year 2 children at Brookdale Primary School on Wednesday 2nd December and with 2 classes of 30 children at Greasby Infant School on Thursday 3rd December

The team…working at a social distance!

Following my welcome and introduction, we shared three workshops

  • Marys experience – from the message from the Angel Gabriel, the census, travelling to Bethlehem, arriving at the Inn where there was no space, the arrival of Jesus and the amazing visitors – the shepherds and three Magi – who recognised Jesus as the King of Kings
  • The Angel Gabriel – Gods messenger to fulfil Gods plan.  The appearance and message ‘Do not be afraid….’ to Mary and then Joseph, also the shepherds and Magi. 
  • The Innkeeper and donkey – who explained his job as an innkeeper, why Bethlehem was so busy due to the census, the arrival of Mary and Joseph followed by the birth of a baby. The children engaged enthusiastically in waking the donkey up so that the donkey could tell them his story, carrying Mary to Bethlehem and all the commotion in the stable!

At the end of each story, the children asked lots of questions including whether Mary and Joseph were married and asking the Angel Gabriel if he could fly!

God Became like Me (Scripture Union)

God Became Like Me – The Christmas message from Scripture Union

During the plenary the children shared what they had learnt from this Hope Journey.  They also received the usual take home gifts of a story book (God Became Like Me), a colouring sheet to explain to families the characters they had met today, a candle prayer to share with the family on Christmas Day, a Happy Birthday to Jesus sticker and an invite to the Christmas services. 

Our next Hope Journey is Epiphany –Journey with the Kings, which will take place on Tuesday 12th and Wednesday 13th January.  

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Steps of Hope

Steps of Hope is a voluntary group of Christians from different Churches, who work as a team to provide food, toiletries, and clothes to the homeless in Liverpool City Centre.  The team have, over the years, also provided emotional support, through letters (for the ones in hostels) and phone calls, and prayer through building relationships with our friends.

Before Covid-19, we were called the trolley dollies, as everything for our friends, such as toiletries, clothes, drinks, and food such, as sandwiches, crisps, biscuits and lots of chocolate, were all in pull-along trolleys.  We followed a certain route which our friends soon got to know.   Some of them used the night shelter called Labre House, where, once a month the team cooked a meal for as many as 75/80 for which the staff, and the recipients were grateful.  A Sunday afternoon bible study was also set up for our friends to meet at the Tree of Life Christian Book Shop in Slater Street in Liverpool.  There was lots of cake, drinks and a place for them to meet and listen to short bible messages and testimonies.   The work has evolved to accommodate the needs of our friends on the streets.

All this changed as the country went into lockdown at the end of March.  At the start of Covid-19 lockdown, The Whitechapel Centre moved the rough sleepers into self- contained accommodation and our visits to Liverpool were cancelled in line with Government guidelines.

There is definitely a spirituality among the homeless, some of them are open to reading literature and gospels, which we provide for those who want them, a lady has joined the team after being homeless herself, she is now in her own house and has given her life to the Lord.

After risk assessments were prepared, at the end of June, it was decided to work from the Tree of Life bookshop.  We offer hot stew, sandwiches, fruit, cake and chocolate biscuits in take away bags each week on a Tuesday 4.30 – 6.00 pm. Downstairs in the basement all the toiletries and clothes are kept.  There are about 8/9 people each week.  Two people take orders for food and drinks outside, with tables between shop and friends, runners take food and drink to them, one person ladles the stew into take away cups and is served with a spoon.  One person sorts the drinks out, one person is given orders for toiletries and clothes.  We are fortunate to have a couple join our team who are outside conversing, listening, and offering prayer to all our friends, this has been amazing as they are truly gifted, and we in turn can learn more about their hardships and concerns.

A prayer chain receives all the names of the people we meet and pray for them each week, we are also covered in prayer each week.

Steps of Hope would like to thank Greasby Methodist Church for all their donations of money and clothing to support this outreach work.  We will continue to work from Tree of Life bookshop during this second lockdown as the café will be open for takeaway only.  It is amazing how God has provided, and blessed this work, and it is a privilege to be part of it.

June Boardman

Hope Journey Remembering

We continue to deliver a programme of Hope Journeys with children and staff at our three local schools – however we continue to work differently! This week we thoroughly enjoyed sharing a virtual Hope Journey Remembering via Microsoft Teams. On Tuesday 17th November we met with two Year 6 classes of 30 children each and staff at Greasby Junior School and on Wednesday 18th November we met with the Year 6 class and staff at Brookdale.

The team…working at a social distance!

Following my introduction and welcome, we shared three workshops

  • What and why we remember – a look at a clip from Horrible Histories and a reflection on Armistice Day, what we should be remembering, why and the symbolism of different coloured poppies
  • A Wartime Experience – delivered whilst sitting in an ‘anderson shelter’, it was such a pity the children could not join us this year.  We thought about the different types of shelters, listened to various recorded stories from those who survived WW2 and thought about how we would feel in such conditions
  • The Anne Frank story – we considered the traumatic experiences of Anne Frank, thought about what Christians are remembering through Communion, wrote prayers which will be offered at Sunday worship on Sunday and prepared a wreath of hope – hopes and dreams for ourselves and the community/world around us.  The schools will display the wreath in classrooms
The Wreath of Hope at Brookdale Primary School

During the plenary the children shared what they had learnt from this Hope Journey.  They also received the usual take home gifts of a replica WW1 St Johns gospel, issued to men in active service; the Jelly Babies and Jesus story and a weekly ration of sweets (equivalent to 5 jelly babies) to share between the entire family for one week – if you could even get hold of some sweets!

Our next Meet The Characters sessions will take place week beginning 6th December for Year 2 children at Brookdale and Greasby Infant School.  This continues to complement the assemblies which are now regularly video recorded to send into school.  It is a great privilege that the schools are so willing to engage with us.  Please join with me in prayer as we continue to share the gospel with over 700 members of the Greasby community this year

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator and E A T