Mission week report: Aberystwyth
What actually goes on during a mission week? Read this report, written by Lydia Alcolado, an English Literature student in her 3rd year at Aberystwyth, to find out! Get a behind-the-scenes look at the events they ran and the opportunities they had to share the gospel.
With the week of “What if..?” events barely over, we at Aberystwyth Christian Union thought we should update you all on what God has been doing here. We started with a “pre-events week” week with a text-a-cupcake event on Monday, a photography competition on Wednesday and a sports quiz on Friday run by Christians in Sport. All events ran smoothly and were well attended giving us an opportunity to faithful proclaim the gospel to students and then point them to events happening the following week.
At the end of the week the members of the Christian Union retreated to their homes to prepare for the week to come. As storm Imogen battered the coast of Aberystwyth a large group of sleepy students met for prayer meeting at 7:45am on a Monday morning. Despite the weather and early start the room was full and it was such an encouragement for all involved to be able to get up every morning and pray together for the week’s events. We were joined by our two speakers, Jonathan Thomas and Sammy Davies who started us off each morning with a devotion to set our hearts on God which was a great pleasure and worth getting out of bed for!
Each day we had prayer meetings followed by flyering and advertising around campus. It was wonderful to be able to get out and interact with students who otherwise would know nothing about the events and encouraging to see how many people came to the Big Question lunchtime events because of being handed a flyer!
For the first half of the week storm Imogen did her best to dampen our spirits but God gave all those involved the strength and motivation to stand out in the wind and rain to invite people to the events. We can’t thank and praise God enough for the strength he gave us all that week!
The flyering each day led straight into the Big Question lunchtime events in which Sammy Davies would tackle the common objections to Christianity. Sammy did wonderfully and God greatly used him to show people that these objections to Christianity don’t make sense when properly inspected and therefore took away people’s excuses to not read the bible or start taking the claims of the gospel seriously. Looking around at the end of each lunchtime event you could see people happily involved in further conversations about what Sammy had said which was a joy to not just see but be a part of.
A massive encouragement of the week was when the Student Union moved us into a smaller room on Wednesday (because the bigger room had been booked out for an open day) and we had people queuing up outside the door to come in and get food! The queue led to some really good chats with people who work in the Student Union who saw how many people were interested in Christianity and became more curious as to what we were saying each lunch time.
We then had a few hours free to go and study and get some much needed work done, which almost inevitably became a time to nap as the week continued! At 6pm every night we held an international meal with a discussion about Jesus and the gospel. Despite numbers at each event varying somewhat, it was such an encouragement to see so many international students feeling welcomed by those Christian Union members who helped each evening and everyone engaging in conversations about Christ.
We then all then hurried over to the Marine Hotel for the evening events. The venue itself was amazing with candle lit tables and yummy cakes and chilled out live music playing as people arrived. Jonathan Thomas spoke each evening and unashamedly proclaimed Christ crucified to everyone who attended. The responses to this reminded us just how amazing God is, with friends we would never expect to come along not just attending but expressing an interest in knowing more!
As you can see God has been working here in Aberystwyth and we really can’t thank Him enough. We would like to ask you to keep praying for the follow up courses taking place on Monday nights, the first of which has already taken place and went extremely well with one girl saying she finally felt like what the bible was saying was a message for her. Please pray for her and everyone else coming to these events and thank God for what He has been doing here.
This blog was first written for the Welsh Christian Unions blog – take a look for more news and stories from CUs in Wales. For more news like this, why not sign up for one of our publications?