Evangelising at the Station for Christmas
Members of the Avonside Evangelism Group took to standing at a train station to invite commuters to Christmas services recently. Revd John Monaghan, vicar of St Edyth's, Sea Mills, reflects on their efforts:
Who would have thought that standing on a train station platform in the dark and near freezing temperatures for four hours (mostly in the pouring rain), watching trains pull in and out would be fun?!
No, we're not train-spotters, and there were no delays or overcrowded trains. It was just that 15 or so of us from St Edyth's spent three mornings at Sea Mills train station singing carols, giving out mince pies and our Christmas church invitations to morning commuters.
What an incredible privilege to live in a country that allows us to stand in very public spaces and sing worship songs to Jesus, inviting others to church and, at the same time, brightening up people's day with smiles and mince pies.
Yes, the weather was terrible on two out of the three mornings, but it was win-win really. The apocalyptic torrents of rain seemed to reinforce a massive sympathy vote from morning commuters and train drivers, thinking 'they must be really committed (or mad) to do whatever they are doing in this weather!'
Singing the same few carols six times over really did get us thinking about the words. One of the more theologically accurate carols is Hark the Herald Angels Sing. 'Who is Jesus?' it asks. He is 'everlasting Lord' who from 'highest heaven' has come to lay 'his glory by' so that we 'no more may die'. Instead of eternal separation from God, we would be given 'second birth'.
Let's continue to share the incredible news of Jesus to others this Advent, and enjoy all the carols and mince pies - in moderation, of course!