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Barnabas in Churches

Resourcing work among children and families

‘And when you welcome one of these children because of me, you welcome me.’
Matthew 18:5 (CEV)

Welcome to the Barnabas in Churches website. We are passionate about bringing the Bible to life for children and families and so, on this site you will find ideas for your Sunday and midweek groups, material for all-age worship, links to our books, resources for training and information about our programmes and ministries.

What's new

Reflective story for Easter

Our new idea this month The new beginning is a reflective story that has been used regularly by the Barnabas team as a presentation of the life of Jesus that links Christmas to Easter. The fact that these two major festivals are often only months apart can be confusing for some. It's an ideal story to share with your group or in church over the Easter season.

Our second new idea this month The feeding of the 5000 is a participative version of the miracle of the five loaves and two small fish that turned a surprise picnic with Jesus into an unforgettable feast.

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New ideas for an Easter service or special event

For those thinking ahead and preparing an all-age service to celebrate the mystery of Easter, here is a new idea you might like to try out:

  • Easter cross words: this contains a simple illustration for turning hate to love via the cross

And for an outline for a more general all-age service or special event, then take a look at the following:

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Easy-to-use ideas for the New Year

  • The baptism of Jesus - it's no accident that many churches begin each new year by reminding us of the story of Jesus being baptised in the River Jordan. Everything starts and is grounded in the knowledge that God loves us first and foremost. This storytelling idea could be used in a Messy Church celebration, within an all-age worship service or with a children's group at the beginning of the year or a term.
  • The temptations of Jesus - the three temptations faced by Jesus in the desert both define his future ministry as well as challenge us as to the best way to make a difference in this world for the better. This storytelling idea could be used for a school assembly, a Messy Church celebration, within an all-age worship service or with a children's group at the beginning of Lent.
  • Celebrating variety and difference - why not share this version of 1 Corinthians 12:12-31 and 13:13 with your team as a way of valuing everyone's contribution to the children's and family ministry at your church.
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Messy Lyfe

Messy Lyfe

Messy Lyfe is a beginner's guide for families who want to learn how to live closer to Jesus every day.

Using a family-friendly approach, the Messy lyfe material draws all ages into a closer understanding of God's love. Through activities, thoughts to reflect upon and short suggested Bible readings, the whole family is given something to think about, be thankful for, to consider in their own lives. By stripping faith down to the essentials for everyday lives, each member of the family can allow Jesus to be there with them throughout the day.

£4.99 | Find out more

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The story of Joseph

Joseph's story is one of the most compelling dramas in the Old Testament and one that raises lots of interesting questions, such as 'How can we trust in God when bad things happen?' and 'Can we honestly forgive those who have hurt us?' this series of three storytelling ideas explores these questions through Joseph's story:

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Celebrate Bonfire Night

The closest thing to a firework display in the Bible happened on Mount Sinai when God gave Moses the ten commandments. The following outline links Bonfire Night to the story of this event

Celebrate Bonfire Night

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Harvest Ideas

Harvest services and harvest suppers are among the most attended and popular church events of the Christian year. Here are some suggestions for all-age activities that could be part of a church family celebration.

Our Christian harvest festival has its biblical roots in the Feast of Tabernacles. Here are some group activity and craft ideas to create a special prayer space linked to the celebration.

Harvest Craft Idea

Harvest Activity

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Joshua - a reflective story

Starting a new task for God can be daunting. Many Christians in this situation have found inspiration and support from the story of Joshua - who took over from Moses the task of leading the people of God. This reflective story explores how Joshua trusted the Lord.

Joshua - A reflective story

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Find out more | Past issues

Have you visited?

Visit BRF Online

BRF Online Shop - packed with resources for your ministry

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Visit the Bible Reading Notes website

Bible Reading Notes - to help you read your Bible regularly

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Visit the Messy Church website

Messy Church - the growing network of all-age church

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Visit the Faith in Homes website

Faith in Homes - nurture your children’s faith in the family

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Visit the Barnabas in Schools website

Barnabas in Schools - for teachers & schools workers

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Visit the Local Church Local School website

Local Church Local School - nurturing positive relationships

Visit site

Have you read?

Find out more about Parachute Fun for Everyone

Support Barnabas

All that we do is only made possible through the generosity of the individuals, churches and charitable trusts that support our work.

We are dependent each year on the financial support of those that share the vision for these pioneering ministries. Your support for our ministry is therefore vital.

Thank you.

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Meet the Team

Jane Butcher

Jane Butcher is based in Birmingham. She oversees the Barnabas Schools Team, leads teacher training across the UK and heads up BRF's Faith in Homes ministry.

More about Jane


Martyn Payne

Martyn Payne is based in London and is responsible for updating the Barnabas in Churches website.

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Chris HudsonChris Hudson joined the Barnabas Children's Ministry Team in 2007. His particular interest lies in using music, storytelling and drama to help children explore the Bible. He is increasingly spending more time on teacher training, and oversees the Barnabas in Schools website.

More about Chris