The Christian Union at our local secondary school died a bit of a death last year. With a grand attendance of zero, I felt it was best to pull the plug for a while. After all, there were probably better things I could be doing with my Wednesday lunch times than sitting alone in a slightly dilapidated classroom, wondering how long I would have to wait before it became acceptable for me to go and sign out at the reception desk without getting an odd look from the receptionist (for those interested it’s about 12 minutes).
Looking back, I’m convinced it was a good idea to let the ground lie fallow for a while. Last year was a bit hectic for a number of reasons and to try and pioneer a new group would have probably been a bit of a strain. But with the advent of a new school year and a bit more man power, I thought it’d be worth having another crack. So the curate and I put our heads together and had a think. We thought to ourselves “what is it that kids with a limited lunch time want out of that lunch time these days?” and of course the answer we came up with was “Jesus!” Then we came to our senses and realised that neither of us were quite that out of touch with reality and that the actual answer was more like “food, drink & enough sugar to finish off a diabetic just by looking at it.”
With that in mind, we decided to do pizza and drinks each week, along with a short talk about Jesus and a chance to ask questions. The groups main focus would be evangelistic and we hoped that the free food and drink would be suitably enticing. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t think the gospel needs a hook to hang it on, but in my experience, kids really like pizza, especially if it’s good pizza and with a Dominos just around the corner, we’d be missing a trick not to capitalise on it. Not to mention that the combination of pizza and Jesus is clearly awesome, as demonstrated by the photo below.
So we decided to give it a go. The first week would just be a social in order to (hopefully) get to know some of the kids before really getting cracking. I spread the word amongst some of our young people and told them to bring their friends along. After all, they were gonna get free food and drink, that had to be an attractive offer. As Wednesday lunchtime approached, we headed to the school with pizza and drinks in hand along with a slight sense of trepidation. Would anyone turn up? What if we were overrun and couldn’t meet demand? It was a bit scary, but with no CU running for the last year, we didn’t really have anything to lose either.
Our local secondary school has two lunch breaks, both lasting 30 minutes (whatever happened to a lunch hour?!) and with different parts of the school being present at each. The first lunch rolled around and we had 6 kids turn up, which was great. At the second lunch, we had about 20. They all wanted to know why we were doing it and we were completely up front and told them that this was the new CU and that if they wanted to come along each week we’d be talking to them about Jesus. Most of them seemed happy with that and it was great that doing some lessons with classes last year meant that I had already crossed paths with some of them before. One kid even asked me how he would go about getting baptised!! I told him to keep coming along and we’d see how it went.
So our second meeting will be this Wednesday. Will anyone turn up this time, knowing that we’re going to be talking about Jesus? Who knows? Our first week was more successful than we could have hoped for. All we can do is keep praying that they will come back and that they’ll have the opportunity to hear about Jesus.