If you went down to St Johns ….
One day the craft group were chatting – they do that a lot. “Teddy bears,” one joked. St Johns in Tenby was going to have a teddy bear festival! The dates were set and there was no going back. They were going to exhibit Bible themes and stories though the medium of teddy bears and that’s how it all started. Everybody mucked in and visited all the charity shops to get hold of the bears.
Here is the result that about 80 people each day over a fortnight dropped-in to visit. Can you guess the stories/themes? Some represented the Day of Pentecost (the Spirit symbolised by a red, fire-breathing dragon), the empty tomb and the ascension, and Paul writing his letters, others celebrated Caldey Island, weddings and baptisms, and of course no teddy bear festival would be complete without a teddy bears’ picnic.
Community themes included tributes to RNLI and Ironman Wales (which comes through Pembrokeshire every 12 months).
When the party was over, everybody rescued their favourites bears and the homeless teddies were found a home. Over £500 was raised for Tŷ Hafan (a children’s hospice), and over £500 for church funds during the two weeks. Thanks to everyone to helped out. It was a lot of hard work and a great team effort.
We had great fun and chatted to many locals and visitors. Some even sent pictures home as an idea for their church. It was a good opportunity to meet and chat to people, and for families to talk about the bible stories.
No festival at St Johns would be complete without our own teddy bears’ party and on the last afternoon everyone enjoyed a cream tea in the church garden, accompanied by Billy and Ieuan singing.