‘Create’ is an arts ministry facilitated by experienced artist and teacher Kay Mason, who has recently also become a Licenced Lay Minister for Severnside parishes just outside of Worcester. ‘Create’ New Worshipping Community meets at St Mary's Church in Kempsey, on the edge of Worcester on Friday mornings 10am-12pm during term time.
Kay has an Arts Foundation degree and many years’ experience of leading and teaching art workshops and courses in paid and voluntary roles and felt called to arts ministry in 2017.
“The idea for ‘Create’ Arts Ministry came out of a desire to help all people, not just artists, to connect to God through the Creative Arts.
Since history began people have been using various art forms as a means of expression. ‘Create’ provides the tools to connect with God the Creator himself and use these to reinforce God’s message to themselves and all mankind. All creativity is a gift from God and for the ultimate purpose of reflecting His beauty and bringing Him glory.” (See Exodus 35:31-35).
Kay adds that connecting with God through a creative process is therapeutic and brings extra benefits to the individual. It has been proven to help those struggling with dementia or mental health problems and Kay is very passionate about the therapeutic power of the arts having experienced some of these benefits herself, following her own mental health struggles.
The Create session starts with a few minutes of contemplative silence, while worship music plays and then a prayer. Kay shares beautiful images of nature and a worship song all linked to the theme for the week, followed by a short guided ‘relaxation mindfulness’ exercise.
“The idea behind ‘relaxation mindfulness’ is to help you put to one side anything that may be troubling you, recognise you’re in the presence of God and that this is just a moment between you and Him.”
The group then moves onto creating. Kay shows the group a few simple pieces of artwork to help inspire them and they can follow these suggestions if they want to, but they are absolutely free to do whatever they feel God is prompting them to do. A vast range of art materials is provided so that they can express themselves fully.
Prayer doodles, prayer circles, collage, bible journalling and painting are the most popular activities within the group.
Create attendee Vicky Whitehouse said:
“I’ve known Kay for nearly two years and joined Create from the very start. In our busy lives today, to have a space where, with Kay’s guidance, there is a sanctuary where you meet friends, have a coffee, laughter, time of reflection through prayer and music and most importantly be creative through Gods word, is so special”
“It gives me that time in the week for me to leave everything at the door and be with God, in a different and empowering way. I’m so privileged to have met Kay, her enthusiasm and creative joy is so infectious. Kay and ‘Create’ inspires me and has enriched my life.”
Artwork from ‘Create’ is set to be showcased at an exhibition early next year and will also feature creative works from the other community art projects Kay is leading on, including with children from Norton Church toddler group ‘Stepping Stones’ and Norton Juxta Kempsey Primary School.
‘Create’ New Worshipping Community meets Friday mornings 10am-12pm during term time at St Mary's Church in Kempsey, Worcester. Anyone new wishing to join will be very welcome and can just show up on the day. Doors open at 9.30am for tea, coffee and pastries.
More details on the exhibition:
Kay has written a programme of Artwork for Norton Juxta Kempsey Primary School and is it set to be showcased at an exhibition early next year entitled ‘What a Wonderful World’ being organised by Kay at St James Church on Friday 2 February 2024 3-5pm and Saturday 3 February 1-4pm.
Key stage 1, year R and 1 have produced two large-scale abstract art and Collage work with year 2.
Another exhibition entitled ‘What a Wonderful World’ will follow in July on Friday 5, 3-5 and Saturday 6 July 1-4pm for Key Stage 2 producing watercolour art for year 3, an instillation art project by year 4 and 5, and altered books by year 6.
Kay is also leading a 9-week course entitled ‘Imaging the story’, based on the book by Gill Sakakini and Karen Case-Green leading to an exhibition in early April at St Mary's Church in Kempsey. The exhibition will feature work produced by adults attending the Imaging the Story course.