St Luke Farnworth were presented with a Child Friendly Church Award from the Diocese of Liverpool last month.
Helen Blackburn received the award on behalf of the church at a special celebration service on 28th June.
The Child Friendly Church Award (CFCA) aims to encourage and enable churches to provide children with the very best possible experience of church, and involve children in the liturgy from as early an age as possible. The award started in the Diocese of Liverpool and has been rolled out by dioceses across the country.
St Luke Farnworth has worked alongside a Child Friendly Church advisor for the past 6 months to help them to include all children no matter their age and help them grow in faith.
Sue Mitchell said: “This award is based on the statement that our churches are ‘journeying together for the growth of God’s family’. The process of becoming child friendly also has the knock-on effect of bringing the whole congregation together, as everyone is encouraged to think about what gifts and talents they can use to help their church grow in other ways too.”
Helen Blackburn said “It was a real joy to receive the Award. The service was devised with children taking a large part and included were Farnworth CofE School Ethos group and choir. The Ethos Group had written a rap based on Jairus’ daughter story. The Open the Book team led by the Reader Sue Smither performed the Jairus story in costume and brought to life this miracle of Jesus. We felt it was an appropriate story for a Child Friendly celebration. It happened to be the Gospel for the day too which the newly crowned Rose Queen, Aleca Deans, read out loud. She and her retinue, consisting of the Sunday School children, led the prayers. The uniformed organisations were also present as well as a 2 week old newborn baby accompanied by proud parents. The Award is a great encouragement to all of us including Lynn Keeling our Sunday School leader who with the churchwardens and many others has worked hard at providing a fantastic space for young children with baskets containing toys and items depicting various bible stories. Along with regular Messy Church activities St Lukes are determined to keep up the good work of including all children and helping them grow in faith.“