Frinton Mission ........ FM 2019

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An evangelistic summer mission event has been held in Frinton on Sea for more than a hundred years. Until 1992 it was run by Scripture Union as a CSSM* beach mission.

In 1993 the local Frinton area churches agreed to take on the running of the event under its new name of Frinton Mission. Every summer, around the first week in August, a team of over a hundred leaders and helpers staff a busy week of activities for children, teenagers and adults in various venues around the town. 

marquee queueOur landmark site is the large marquee situated on the Greensward at the end of Connaught Avenue. This serves as an information and prayer centre, and as a meeting place for large gatherings for worship services on the Sundays, and for a wide range of morning, afternoon and evening adult events.

Local church premises are used as the venues for age-specific teaching and activities for children and teenagers, and for focused Bible study for adults. 

A great strength of Frinton Mission is the way in which the churches in the town work together so effectively, to give everyone the opportunity to meet with God in all sorts of ways, and to help his people grow in their faith through this exciting annual event.

1950s sand pulpit

Frinton CSSM      beach mission
in the 1950s

Note the sand platform 
which was built each morning, and 
decorated with flowers!


And another photo more recently come to light ...

1948 CSSM 

* Children's Special Service Mission was the original name, from 1867, of the organisation now called Scripture Union. Begun by Thomas 'Pious' Hughes and Josiah Spiers in Islington, London, this evangelical Christian movement was less formal than the Sunday Schools of the day, and attracted children who in turn brought their friends. CSSM grew into an international movement that included missions in buildings, and on beaches.

Arguably the most visible mission operated by CSSM and now Scripture Union has been the beach mission. Volunteers from different Christian churches go on mission together, set up large tents at popular seaside sites where people spend summer holidays, typically for two weeks. Missioners often live in tent or caravan parks for the period of mission, or in a large house offered free by the owners.  That was the case in Frinton where teams would stay in 'Ivanhoe' in Second Avenue.

Often a 
marquee would be erected to use for daytime and evening meetings and activities for children and adults. Parents saw the beach mission as a safe place for children to have some time in their day, and give the parents free time. The children have fun, and this and the ongoing programme encourages them to return through the weeks of the mission, and in successive years when the family returns to that resort. 

A typical week day would start at 8am with 'Gold Diggers' where a volunteer and a small group of children would meet and discuss a short section of the Bible. From this section everyone would then pick a 'password' - which was a sentence or part of the passage. Throughout the day children and volunteers would challenge each other to remember both the password and where in the Bible it came from. Later on in the morning there would be a service on the beach. The pulpit would be made of sand and a text would be added made up of brightly painted metal bottle tops. Instead of hymns, short choruses would be sung by all those attending. A story would be told by the volunteer chosen to host the service of the day. It was so much more fun than Sunday School, and children
learned about Jesus and the Christian faith through happiness and example.

Some beach missions also made use of nearby church halls for teenage activities, such as a coffee shop or to stage a dance.

From Wikipedia, with thanks.