What a year it has been!
I would first of all like to thank Frankie for all she has done this year. I hope she has enjoyed it, even though she had to work with her brother! I would also like to say a big thank you for all the help we have had with fundraising, not only to the youth, but to the whole congregation. We could not have done it without all your support.
Secondly, as you are all well aware, we go to Uganda in a weeks’ time. We would ask that you be praying for us and the trip, that we are safe and that God uses us for his purposes.
Even though we have focused a lot on the trip this year, we have had a lot of other things going on as well. One thing that has been really encouraging this year is our work in schools. It has become increasingly hard to get into schools, as they are more wary of ‘religious’ content/groups. On the bright side, this means that we have to work harder to make sure our message is good and we have to rely more on prayer. God does open doors though. I have been in Avonbourne this year running a lunch club called ‘Big Questions’. I have been working with Pace and Anthony Thorpe from Cranleigh. It has been great to get to know the young people there.
We have looked at a lot of questions throughout the year – some Christian-based and others not so much, like ‘Is a Jaffa cake a cake or a biscuit?!’ – but even with the silly questions we were able to get the gospel in. With the Jaffa cake one we ended up looking at the passage about ‘give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and give to God what is God’s’. That then lead us onto another session looking at the image of God. It all started with a lunch club, but since then we have been trusted to run RE lessons and assemblies and I was also invited in for a reflection day. This was where Year 8s questioned me about my life. It meant that I was able to talk freely about my faith and what God has done for me. Please pray that these opportunities will continue. Also one girl from the lunch club is going to ‘Soul Survivor’ this summer, so please pray that she will meet with God. I am still trying to get into Harewood, but it is a slow process, so please also keep this in your prayers.
Thank you for all your support this year.
Nathan Bendell, Youth Minister