Driven by CMA national chairman, Mike Fitton, The Biker Bible has kick started a high revving revival among Britain’s bikers. Since 2007, over 54,000 copies of the Contemporary English Version New Testament have been distributed by Christian Motorcyclist Association.
Mike and Sandy Fitton
“It’s incredibly successful, far beyond all our expectations,” National Chairman for the association, Mike Fitton says.
“When I was preparing to have the first print-run I felt God was challenging us to have the faith to print 10,000. That was a sizable amount of money for the first venture. We printed 10,000 and went with a team to the Isle of Man TT Centenary.
“Within 6 hours, 393 of the 400 were taken, it was incredible. In that time we had some amazing chances to witness to people about the way in which Christ had changed our lives and the offer was for them too.”
Mike says each 10,000 print run lasts no longer than 9 months. He encourages people to donate money toward the initiative so more Biker Bibles can be produced.
‘Can I ask you one question?’
At heart, Mike is an evangelist. “Our purpose is simply to bring the gospel to bikers of all different ages,” he says.
Travelling across the country to various biking events, Mike often says to people who say they are not interested in his message: “If I can ask you one question and the answer is no, I’ll leave you then.”
“I say, ‘If God exists and knows all about your past and your present yet still loves you enough to want a relationship with you, would you be interested?’”
Our purpose is simply to bring the gospel to bikers of all different ages
“To this day, I’ve never had anybody say ‘no’. One guy walked away without answering then came back three hours later and said, ‘I cannot get this question out of my mind, I‘ve got to talk to you about it.’”
Often, Mike will encourage bikers to go away and pray themselves.
“If I get the chance I say to them, ‘Go away and say God 'if you’re there, show me.’ And he does of course, because he loves them more than we do. It’s a remarkable thing to see someone start to realise there’s something in this.”
One of CMA’s most successful initiatives has been the Holy Joes Cafés the team set up at biking events.
“These are big marquees where there can be anything from 3 to 10,000 bikers.”
Mike and the team will serve tea, coffee and hot chocolate.
“People can sit and be in a Christian environment at a bike rally which is quite alien to Christian things.”
5000 people have passed through Holy Joes, which opens 24 hours a day. Mike claims the first thing many bikers do is set up their tent then find not the bar, but Holy Joe’s. “Some of them just come because they love us. We’ve cared for them for years and years, welcomed them and befriended them. I do wedding blessings, we’ll care for them if one of their friends has died. If they’ve got issues in their lives, we’ll talk about them. Or if they just want to go to sleep on the table with their head down because they’ve had too much to drink, we’ll wrap them up in emergency blankets, get the paramedics to check them out and then just look after them.”
‘I feel like a burden has been lifted’
Mike tells the story of one lady that came into the tent shortly after her daughter had committed suicide.
“She had no idea how to cope with it and needed someone to help. Her expectation as a non-Christian was she would walk into the café and the presence of God would solve her problems there and then. I thought, 'what an incredible expectation of faith in a God she didn’t really know."
“We prayed for her that God would intervene in the situation for her, heal the pain and she would experience God’s love on a one to one basis for herself. At the end of it she said, ‘I feel like the burden has been lifted’ and her eyes filled with tears."
“She went out of the café into the rock and blues tent next door and brought five of her friends in. It was so reminiscent of how Jesus spoke to the fisherman and one brought the other. Five people wanted us to pray with them as well, which was amazing.”
Mike is excited about the work of CMA and counts it a privilege to be heading up the ministry. But it’s when we talk about loving people that his passion comes across even more clearly.
“I’m always challenged by a comment RT Kendall made. He said, ‘Don’t befriend people to win them for Christ, befriend them anyway’. That’s such a telling statement.”
“I’ve met people who want to, through their church, reach out to their community. If the community doesn’t respond immediately they move on.
“We don’t take that attitude. We love unconditionally and love them through bad times and irrespective of what they’ve done. I’m going to love them as God calls me to. Eventually you see these hearts that have been so adamant against the gospel breaking down because love bridges the gap and reaches out to them.”
Don’t befriend people to win them for Christ, befriend them anyway
Keen to get the message out about the work of CMA, Mike makes a plea to the Christian community: “You don’t even have to be a biker to be part of CMA. Because we’re a mission, if you have any skill, experience or ministry gifting you want to bring into the world of CMA, we’re always looking for more people to pray or maintain equipment or raise funds. They free up the bikers to do the evangelism if there’s other people willing to help us with practical things.”
Find out more about CMA by visiting their website.
July 19th, 2012 - Posted & Written by Sam Hailes