Abington Church has launched a new initiative, aimed particularly at young families who have recently had their children baptised, and the Church’s Tots & Teddies families but, anyone with young children are welcome.

The brainchild of the Church’s Children’s & Families Worker, Anne Quinn, called “Umbrella Church”, it is a half-way house between a totally informal church service and the Sunday morning 10 a.m. Eucharist.

Anne said, “I thought of an umbrella covering us all and that seemed symbolic of what we are trying to do with this service”

To be held on the first Sunday of each month at 3p.m., the Service begins with a warm welcome as everyone arrives, from Anne, Abington’s Rector Revd Jun and members of Abington Churches Mothers’ Union, who serve refreshments including homemade cakes, prior to the Service.

The children are given a raindrop shaped piece of card as they come into the Church, on which to draw or write on. During the service, they are invited to come forward and put the raindrops in and upturned umbrella.

The short 30 minute service comprises of prayers, a bible story and songs all appropriate to young children. At the launch of the “Umbrella Church”, some of the children came forward and joined Anne in the chancel, sitting on the carpet, so they could see the pictures in the bible story book. At the end of the service, families were invited to put up large umbrellas which were handed out, under which they sat or stood to join in a final prayer from Revd Jun.

Abington’s Umbrella Church will continue on the first Sunday of each month, with the next service to be in Abington Church on Sunday 3 November at 3 p.m.