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Whole-hearted then; whole-hearted now

“Come help change the world.” This has been Agapé’s rallying cry for the past 50 years, and was repeated emphatically again at MOVE Weekend 2017, our 50th anniversary celebration in Yarnfield, Staffordshire.

From 3rd-5th February, Agapé UK gathered to celebrate 50 years of God at work in the UK with friends, supporters, students, volunteers, alumni, and current staff.  It was a fantastic time of both reminiscing about all that has happened in years past, and training, equipping and envisioning for the years yet to come.

Over the course of the weekend, delegates had the opportunity to engage in seminars giving practical advice on a variety of topics, including prayer, fasting and sharing faith with Muslims, as well as tools in sharing faith at work, and discipling and equipping believers at university.  “I have been reminded that knowing the Knowing God Personally outline and sharing it with people is a powerful and life changing tool,” said David.  “I loved hearing of the boldness that Agapé staff and volunteers have – I need to introduce it into my life!” Abisayo shared, “I am right at the very beginning of my working life and want to start it with evangelism taking its rightful place as one of my priorities. I’m sure you can help!”

A large number of people went out into local communities on Saturday afternoon, seeking to bless nearby churches through partnership in outreach. “It was good to help the local church in their outreach and get out onto the doors. Thanks for the challenge. I’m praying for lasting fruit!” said Jamys, who took part. Tim, a church leader who joined in with the internet outreach that same afternoon, shared, “ is fab – we must post a whole number of these as a church group so it becomes the Stories page on our website, so that enquirers may tap into the other stories available.” 

In main sessions, delegates heard from four keynote speakers, who encouraged them to think about what it meant to be whole-hearted for Christ where they study, work and live: looking back at the wonder of the gospel, asking how we connect the gospel to our culture, how we connect to God, and also examining Jesus’ call to go to the world. Said one delegate, “God has reminded me that I am significant because of Him. Therefore I have a job to do in getting His word out there, but I can do so without fear, as everything I do is hand-in-hand with Him.”

The scale of the impact that God has had through the faith of the original Ambassador Team, who arrived in the UK in 1967, became particularly clear throughout the Celebration Evening, as stories were shared of God’s powerful activity in the UK and across the world as a direct result of their initial step of faith. “Seeing the way God has used individuals to shape so many people’s lives is incredible,” said Jonny. “It has encouraged and inspired me to persevere in reaching out to others, even when I have no idea where it has led, because God is at work and can use even the most seemingly insignificant encounter to bring about transformation and redemption.” Rachel was also greatly impacted through the evening: “God has been so faithful! Hearing stories of people who trust him decades ago – and now – it’s clear that God’s unconditional love has not changed one ounce. It makes me ask, ‘How can I follow Jesus more closely?’“

“It is so inspiring to see the incredible impact that a relatively small number of people can have,” said Tom. “Agapé is truly changing the world.” 

To find out more about MOVE and our 50 year anniversary click here.

By Rachel Wears
Rachel works in our Birmingham HQ on the Communications Team, having previously worked on a Student Life team in Oxford. Rachel graduated from the University of Oxford with a degree in English Language and Literature.


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