What has Engage been up to?

We are delighted to introduce two new part-time members of staff:

Bisi Olaye
Bisi Olaye
Bişi Olaye, from ChristChurch Woking, is our new school mentor. Bisi started with us after Easter to take over from Carrie who leaves us in June to go onto further study.
Sian Bates
Sian Bates
Sian Bates, from New Life Church joined us before Easter as our Schools Worker. Sian will focus on primary schools but will also support other areas of Engage’s mission.

Christian Unions in schools are vital to the sustainability of young people who follow the Christian faith and those wanting to see
what it’s about, writes Tom Garner.  A year seven boy at our local school CU said he likes the after-school meeting “because for me school is one of the hardest places to be a Christian”.  Hearing those words reminded me why it’s important we do what we do.  Young people don’t
want to stand out, be different and – especially – be associated with something viewed negatively by many others.  CUs are a place where young people can feel a sense of community within a school environment. They make new friends, feel valued, are prayed for and are encouraged with their own faith. One of the greatest positives of a CU is that it crosses barriers between denominations: we are no longer “this church” or “that church” but we are THE CHURCH – a unified group which loves Jesus and wants to make a difference in our world.

It creates a greater sense of team, mission, and goal. I also believe youth work has always led the way in uniting the Church with a singular goal: to share Jesus with young people.  Many youth leaders I have worked with are so hungry to see young people come to know Jesus that they are willing to work with all other youth leaders, regardless of traditions and values.  The goal is simple for us: young people meeting Jesus – nothing else!

In addition, having a space where young people can explore the Christian faith is an important evangelistic opportunity.  Meeting in a school and not in a Church building takes away any initial barriers that can be present: no awkward shuffling into a building they have never visited before, no strangers offering biscuits or making them feel unwelcome because they walked over the freshly cut grass outside the Church doors.

As rough and ready as school classrooms can be (usually messy, dirty or even trashed after a long day school day) they are great spaces to welcome young people interested in what we have to say School CUs (continued) about Christianity without also having to process a new space. “Oh, this is where I have maths!” is a great conversation starter for a leader.  In essence, Christian Unions are vital for those with faith and those exploring faith: meeting young people where they are at and walking alongside them on the journey. It’s a privilege and an honour to meet young people in these spaces and we must never take these opportunities for granted.  So, what are you waiting for? Get into your local school and help the youth leaders!

Tom Garner, Youth Worker at St Saviour’s Church, Guildford

sally lynch

Farewell Sally

Many of you will know Sally Lynch who has been with us for many years. Sadly for us, Sally has decided to start new adventures. We asked
her to share some thoughts of her time at Engage. Here’s what she said.  “Twenty years ago, a friend and I went to Knaphill Infants School to watch an assembly put on by the school assembly team from “SCAT” – it was well before we changed our name to Engage. I recall there was a lot about wheelbarrows and cauliflowers. And I also remember my determination that it was something I really wanted to be part
of.  Christmas 2002 was the first time I stepped out in front of a hall of children, and I was hooked! The rest, as they say, is history!  Now, twenty years later, the current Engage Team is taking assemblies to the children of those children!  We estimated once that on average we would see 8,000 children during each three-week assembly run, which took place three times a year, plus a shorter (one week) Harvest run. Multiply it by 20 years and, well, my maths isn’t great, but it’s many thousands of children who have heard the gospel of Jesus – such a privilege! I have met and worked with many people from across the many brilliant churches in our town, as well as countless incredible teachers and head teachers from schools. It has been an honour meeting and getting to know them. Woking is truly blessed by its churches and schools.  Now it is time for me to hang up my angel wings and step aside for new people to come in and take their turn in this great work. The honour of being part of something so amazing will remain with me: I go with many happy memories.
Thank you for having me! 

Prayer Prompts

Please pray for:

  • The young people being mentored, that they may grow and have peace of mind.

  • The summer assemblies in primary schools.

  • It’s Your Move transition lessons due to take place during June and July.

  • The Christian Unions and Prayer Clubs.

Get Involved!

For us to continue taking dramatised assemblies into schools we need  more volunteers. It is fun, flexible and you can choose which assemblies you would like to help with. If you would like to serve but can’t on a Sunday, why not serve through Engage? If this interests you
please contact Shelley NOW by emailing office@engagewoking.org.

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