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Posts Tagged ‘Aston’

Pete Halford

March 11th, 2011

CC: We know you are a Student in Birmingham. Where and what do you study?

PH:  I’m reaching the end of my four years at Aston University, studying Business & Computer Science. The time has flown by (especially the year I spent on my Placement, working for Churchcentral) and my intention is to stay in Birmingham to continue to be a part of what God is doing here.

CC: What is it like being a Christian at Uni?

PH:  Being a Christian while at University has definitely been a lifestyle choice. I make no secret of my beliefs, and my friends accepted me like that. I’ve found that many students are spiritually open and willing to debate and discuss Christianity. However, it’s not always been easy but at last I have managed to get two of my friends to agree to come on an Alpha Course!

CC: What have you seen God do on campus while you have been at Uni?

PH: God is certainly at work on the campus, especially at times when groups like Agapé and the Christian Union have been active in mission. I am certain there’s a time of reaping ahead at Aston – as Jonny Mellor prophesied the other week ‘there has been lots of seed sowing at Aston University; now it’s time to reap the benefits of this labour’. The start of the Alpha: course near campus although a small step is a highly significant one.

CC: What is it like being a student at Churchcentral?

PH: Student life in Churchcentral is brilliant! There’s always something going on, and it’s good to be in a church setting which is young and vibrant and yet which contains wise and mature Christians. Student lifegroups are where it’s at, and the Loft (our fortnightly gathering on the Birmingham University campus) has taken off with some great times of worship and teaching. With so many great families in the church we get to share fellowship with them in their homes, enjoying their hospitality and being included in their lives. As a student in Churchcentral you can be fully involved in church life and part of the wider loving community with our own unique contribution to make.

Olly Thorp

December 1st, 2009


CP: How are you involved in 61:4?

OT: In August I started full-time work with a Salvation Army team as part of what’s called a ‘61:4 Project’. Having worked part-time for the project for eighteen months beforehand, it has been an exciting step to be fully immersed in the vision and the work there.

CP: Tell us more about 61:4 and the vision behind it?

OT: There are a number of 61:4 projects throughout the country and in fact the world. The vision comes from the scripture in Isaiah chapter 61 verse 4:

‘They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations.’

In basic terms, those involved look to take on a lifestyle through which they work to live out lives in the community that are Christ-like, accessible and relevant to those around them. By living this way and contributing to change in the community, we hope to see the good news of Jesus spread through action as well as through word.

CP: So what does the Aston project do?

OT: The project in Aston is essentially a youth provision looking to support the local community through open youth groups, a mentoring scheme, support to local schools, running holiday schemes, sports teams, residentials and community days. This is part of the broader incarnational lifestyle vision through which we look to serve the entire community.

CP: What effect have you seen this project have?

OT: Much of the effect that a project like this has, especially in terms of youth and children’s work, will often only be seen in the long term. The day by day influence on people’s lives means gradual  change and sometimes a retracing of those steps many times over. God’s provision has meant that we have been able to get to know a huge variety of people from the community and have seen some  of those develop and grow deeper in their relationships with Jesus. We are passionate and excited about this continuing and seeing God transform this community into one of His image.

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