“I threw on my sweats and got here as fast as I could. This is my favorite event at church, and I wasn’t going to miss it!”
That’s what Jane blurted out breathlessly one Saturday morning at a gathering we call Mug & Muffin. She had gotten up early with her three little boys but in the distractions of their morning routine had completely forgotten about this semi-annual women’s event. When she finally remembered, she dropped everything, explained things to her husband, said she’d be back in a couple of hours and dashed out of the house.
It turns out that women love to gather together in a home over a hot cup of coffee or tea and a homemade muffin, talking about life and faith, with the freedom to just roll out of bed and come as you are.
The recipe for this event is so simple: Wear your comfiest clothes, bring your favorite mug, hear a woman’s story and a short Bible teaching. But the final product is often profound. New friendships are formed, joyful fellowship is experienced, outsiders are invited in, the Gospel is proclaimed and God’s Word is explained.
How to Plan a Mug & Muffin Event
Not only is this a favorite church event for women, it’s also one of the easiest to plan. Our women’s ministry team works together to recruit a host home for the event, which is always held on a Saturday morning from 10am-12pm. It helps to meet in a home with a large living room or open floor plan, depending on the size of your group. Women always express how much they love gathering in someone’s home.
Next, we brainstorm about who could give a testimony (either a salvation testimony or a story about something God is currently teaching them) and who could do a short devotional teaching from Scripture (from any passage they choose or have been reading lately). After we find two women who are willing, one of us meets with each one of them to listen to what they plan to say and offer feedback - both affirming and constructive. This one-on-one meeting is meant to be both a time of discipleship as well as a safeguard, since we want to make sure everyone attending hears both the Gospel and God’s Word clearly and accurately.
Another person on our team recruits several women to bring a dozen muffins each, of whatever kind they desire, making sure there are at least a couple of varieties that accommodate food allergies. And we’ve definitely learned that it’s best to err on the side of too many muffins than just enough!
The morning of the event, a couple of us arrive at the hostess’s home early enough to set up the coffee and hot water station, including a few paper cups in case anyone forgets to bring their favorite mug. We also serve as greeters, helping women connect with one another and feel welcome.
Typically, we plan for about 30-45 minutes of mingling and conversation and keep the testimony and devotion time to a strict 10-15 minutes each. Our hope is always to keep it light in programming, so as to not overwhelm the newcomer, but also meaningful enough to encourage those who already know and walk with Christ. Sometimes we add a bit of singing or break into small groups for discussion at the end. A panel discussion is another idea we hope to implement in the future.
Why It Works
One of the guiding principles of our women’s ministry team comes from Colossians 1:28:
Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.
Though it is our simplest event and opportunity for women, requiring almost no commitment or study, Mug & Muffin is an event which we pray will be used by God to proclaim Christ to women, building and maturing their faith.
P.S. If you are interested in more information, a detailed planning countdown and event day schedule, I’m happy to send along the documents we’ve developed toward hosting this event at our church. You are welcome to contact me via email.
Melanie Krumrey is a pastor’s wife, serves as the women’s ministry leader at MERCYhouse church in Amherst, MA, and blogs at www.dwellabideadorn.com.