Thirty churches across York joined together to support Hope Invasion, a three week long youth mission that culminated with a concert headlined by LZ7 and TWELVE24.
As part of the initiative, more than 70 teenagers took to the streets over the Easter week to proclaim the Gospel message- giving up the start of their Easter holidays to engage with young people in York. Meanwhile, youth workers, drama groups and live bands visited local secondary schools during the weeks leading up to the end of term to lead religious studies lessons for 11 to 14 year olds, performing dramas and live concerts at lunchtimes.
April 4th saw a free youth event take place in the centre of York, with free activities such as a football cage, face painting, gladiator jousting, nail art and a bungee run. The evening concert, which was attended by hundreds of young people featured a number of bands including LZ7 and TWELVE24 from the Message Trust and a local band called 'This Resistance'.
The Archbishop of York lent his support to Hope Invasion, using a video message to encourage York's youth community. He said: "There is hope, and whatever your past, together with God, suddenly everything is possible. I pray that you'll know that God is close at hand, closer than your own breath, and he will give you the courage to have dreams that will transform not only your lives, but the lives of all those you meet, for the better."
The youth were also given the opportunity to sign up for one of the twelve Youth Alpha courses taking place across York during the summer. These unique Youth Alpha courses aim to give youngsters the chance to explore the Christian faith with others their age. More than 100 young people in York registered their interest.
The Hope Invasion initiative is part of the Hope Revolution, an organisation that works with local churches, across all denominations, with the aim of training and equipping youth leaders and staging regional mission events in order to reach 11 to 14 year olds with the Gospel. They are currently working towards a year of mission in 2014.
Speaking of the York mission, Caleb Ellwood, Hope Invasions's co-ordinator and youth worker at Gateway Church, said: "The young people we met were interested in finding out more about this hope we have for the future and we were so excited to be able to give them an opportunity to explore it further. I was so thrilled to see Christian youth taking risks to reach their friends for Jesus and even more excited when young people made a response to become a follower of Jesus."
April 10th, 2012 - Posted & Written by Riyaza Rodriguez