Wednesday, 9 April 2008

The Church ARMY

This morning I went to a presentation in city centre Manchester from the Church Army. They're a group that we have nothing like in TEC or the US. They're definitely not like the Salvation Army, but why they have their "old fashioned" name I'm not sure - they are over 150 years old, but they just hired a young (30's) guy to be their CEO (but he probably has some military title in front of his name, they're all called Captain or Brother or Sister ...).

There was this minister to young people who spoke about working with young people in the North West. This is his story here and you can search around the site for other things they're doing. One of the most amazing things he said was how yes, the project is supposed to BE for the young people (and to show them the love of God and bring them gently to Christ) BUT the best part is that he clearly understood the effect the ministry was having to the "older" "church" people who were his "volunteers". He said for the first time they were seeing how there WERE the ministry of Christ in the world, and their presence even in the days they weren't working with the bus or at church was God's work as well. VERY mutual in the ministry!!

Also I loved the way he described "success" - he said IF the kids keep coming back week after week they were successful. They go into one part of the city only once a week in the evening/night. And when a young person keeps coming back that's a success. Truth! An inspirational morning. Thank God!

OH!! And I forgot to say the Church of England is the only church affiliation they have but gives them NO money. The workers are actually "licensed" as Church Evangelists, but not ordained.

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