Logo

 

Banner Image:   Baptist-Times-banner-2000x370-
Template Mode:   Baptist Times
Icon
    Post     Tweet

The church at the carnival

An inflatable church and free tropical punch helped a Baptist congregation meet hundreds of its community in Europe’s biggest one-day carnival


Around 200,000 people attend the Luton International Carnival, and this year Limbury Baptist Church made sure it had a very visible presence.

LimburyIt hired the inflatable Baptist Union of Great Britain church, served 100 litres of free tropical punch, hosted puppet shows and craft activities, and gave away hundreds of helium balloons, leaflets and gospel tracts. There was also worship and simply a chance for carnival goers to sit down and have a chat. Altogether around 1000 people visited the church stall in Wardown Park.

‘It was an amazing day,’ said minister David Fleming. ‘We had some long conversations, there were lots of people stopping by and it’s the first event I’ve been to where we’ve run out of gospel tracts.’

David said he had been inspired by the Big Hearted message of Chris Duffett’s year as Baptist Union president in 2012-2013.

‘I know from these kind of events every stall wants your money, so I wondered if we could do something that was more generous.’

Around 40 members of Limbury took part, bolstered by another half a dozen people from Blenheim Crescent Baptist Church.

They gave away 700 glasses of free punch, running out in the afternoon, plus a hundred helium balloons, tracts and leaflets about their church. Their own teenagers organised the puppet shows, producing five throughout the day. Dozens of children took part in the craft activities.

Limbury inflatable tentThe inflatable tent, which is in the shape of a church, was also a draw.

‘To take part in a carnival like this I think you have to be a bit brash,’ said David. ‘The inflatable church was a huge talking point.

‘If anything we were a little overwhelmed by the numbers who came, but the spirit among our people was fantastic, both on the day and in the run up to the carnival. We joined Luton in having a great time.

For a medium sized Baptist church, it was an amazing bit of outreach.’

David is determined to work alongside other churches to produce something as ‘bold and brash’ next year.

‘I’m pretty sure we were the only Christian group there,’ he said, ‘If we had known just many people were going to come, we could have done even more.

‘Already my church is saying “Let’s do it again”, so I think it will be a regular thing for us!’ 
 

Do you want to use the inflatable tent at your community event? It can be hired through the Arthur Rank Centre

Baptist Times, 31/05/2014
    Post     Tweet
Examples of how Home Mission funds are being used in the Central Baptist Association
SubArticleD2019
This year we celebrate 20 years of twinning with Baptist churches in Israel, writes David Ronco. They take time, but have been a blessing to all churches involved
Examples of how Home Mission funds are being used in the Central Baptist Association
SubArticleD2019
A Blackpool theme was arranged by members of Spurgeon Baptist and St Frideswide’s churches
Chris Matthewman travels from Land’s End to John O’Groats using local bus services in record time
Over-60s were treated to a feast of activities, all-day refreshments and fun at September’s ‘Holiday at Home’
This is what we learnt in creating a space for the big questions about Christianity, writes minister
     Regional News 
    Posted: 19/09/2019
    Posted: 23/08/2018
    Posted: 22/06/2017
    Posted: 07/02/2016
    Posted: 27/04/2015
    Posted: 16/03/2015
    Posted: 20/06/2014
    Posted: 28/04/2014
    Posted: 05/09/2013
    Posted: 05/09/2013
    Posted: 05/09/2013
    Posted: 05/09/2013