Booming brilliant! People of all ages flock to UK church events

Churches in the UK are celebrating after a successful year saw record numbers of people attended events around the country.

The Alpha Course – boosted by involvement from adventurer Bear Grylls – saw record numbers of people explore the Christian faith.

Some 271,000 people took up invites from friends or churches to take part in the 11-week series at more than 9,000 different venues.

The Soul Survivor events saw thousands of young people commit to follow Jesus Christ

The Soul Survivor events saw thousands of young people commit to follow Jesus Christ

While the team behind a set of summer festivals that aim to reach young people are praising God after 1,527 young people made commitments to follow Jesus this year.

Organisers of Soul Survivor say 26,000 attended the five different events, which took place in Scotland, Staffordshire and Somerset.

The remarkable figures cap off a stunning year for faith in the UK which saw 2,000 people in Reading become Christians in under a month after an outreach project by US evangelist Tommie Zito.

Soul Survivor leader Mike Pilavachi

Soul Survivor leader Mike Pilavachi

Soul Survivor charity leader Mike Pilavachi said: “We have loved seeing how God has met with young people this summer and nothing beats seeing people meet him for the very first time.”

On top of the spiritual side, the thou-sands attending each week took part in a giant pulled-pork picnic, silent discos, UV parties, a huge ceilidh, and Colour Chaos dry paint parties.

The last ever ‘Momentum’ confer ence for 20s and 30s also took place this summer.

Speaking about the change, Mike added: “We are more convinced than ever of the need for a Naturally Supernatural conference for the whole church.

“We love seeing young people stepping out in praying for one another, in hearing from God and in receiving the gift of tongues, but our passion is to see the Holy Spirit moving in powerful ways in churches throughout the UK and beyond.

“We’re longing to help equip God’s people so we might all grow in confidence in moving in God’s power in our everyday lives.”

The remarkable boost for church events is mirrored by the increasing popularity of the Alpha Course.

The course, created out of Holy Trinity Brompton, gives people a basic introduction to Christianity and an opportunity to come to faith.

Now, a new campaign fronted by TV adventurer Bear Grylls, encourages more people to explore.

“Finding a simple faith that empowers my life? To me that’s been my greatest adventure” – Bear Grylls

He said: “What does it take to live a life of adventure?

“The truth is, the first step is always the hardest, that’s the one that takes the most courage. But I’ve learnt not to run from that fear and just do it.

“My Christian faith can be a little up and down. Like any relationship, it has struggles and it has doubts, but it’s so often brought light to a dark path, warmth to a cold moun- tain and strength to a failing body.

“I remember crawling on to the summit of Everest and clearing the snow from my mask to see the curvature of the earth at the edges. But finding a simple faith that empowers my life? To me that’s been my greatest adventure.”

Rev Nicky Gumbel, who pioneered the course, added: “There is almost certainly an Alpha running in your area – I encourage you to give it a try.”

This is an article from the November 2016 issue of New Life Newspaper

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