The Archbishop of York, a nanny to the stars, a rugby player - and an inflatable airship - are all playing a part in Pudsey Parish Church’s mission next month.
Dr John Sentamu will recount his story of standing up to Idi Amin in Uganda (as well as talking about what gets him up in the morning) at one of many events taking place from 5-10 May.
And the church has its very own airship for the occasion. Assistant Curate Ben Randall, says, “We’ll be flying a 20ft blimp from the tower advertising the mission. It's so large and flies so high that we've had to obtain permission from the Aviation Authority - I can't imagine many churches have their own airship!”
Vicar Paul Ayers said, "It's fantastic that the Archbishop is to inspire us with his own journey of faith. Our experience is that faith isn’t an add-on extra, it's the fuel for life, and we’d like the people of Pudsey to know that too. At every event people will be invited to give their comments and to join a course to find out more if they want to."
In addition to the Archbishop (Civic Hall, 5 May at 7.30pm), Rachel Waddilove, a former nanny for the children of both Gwyneth Paltrow and Minnie Driver will will share her child rearing tips on 6 May. Leeds Rhino and local boy Jamie Jones Buchanan will give his inside story on playing pro in one of the toughest sports in the world on 7 May. And there'll be free lunches on 6, 7 and 8 May.
Pudsey’s parish youth club night on Friday will have music from ‘This Resistance’, and Saturday 9 May is dedicated to families with a fun day in the church grounds with free activities (including a climbing wall), followed by an evening party in the parish, with ‘bubbly, curry and a boogie’. It’s all wrapped up on Sunday 10th with services to which all are invited.
Ben Randall adds, 'I love Pudsey and I love the Bible, so naturally I want them to get to know each other better! And our massive mission this May is a great way to kick-start that introduction.'
For more information, visit: http://www.pudseyparish.org.uk
Archbishop John Sentamu will tell the story of his life, growing up in Uganda and becoming a barrister, standing up to the dictator Idi Amin, and coming to Britain in 1974. He says, 'I'm always struck at the graciousness of God that led the sixth of 13 children, born thousands of miles away in Uganda, to this wonderful place known as "God's own county'.
Rachel Waddilove is one of the country’s most sought after ‘gurus’ in the care and well-being of babies and young children. Neither a die-hard disciplinarian nor a zealous ‘liberal’, her client families included celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Minnie Driver.
Jamie Jones Buchanan is a local lad with an impressive career in rugby league. Starting at Stanningley he progressed through the Leeds Academy to play for the Rhinos and has represented England and Great Britain. He came to faith through fellow player Ali Lauitiiti. He says, 'He was a Christian and it was very obvious to me that he was different. He invited me to church, and I’ve been every week since.'
Canon Roger Simpson is the 'Evangelist to the North' who has led churches in danger of closing to become the most thriving in their area.
Key Events 5-10 May
- Tuesday 5th - An Evening with Archbishop Sentamu, Pudsey Civic Hall +
- Wednesday 6th - Rachel Waddilove
- Thursday 7th - An Evening with Jamie Jones Buchanan of Leeds Rhinos. +
- Friday 8th - Youth Night with Live Band +
- Saturday 9th (afternoon) - Family Fun Day - church grounds
- Saturday 9th (evening) - "May Ball"
- Sunday 10th - Guest Services, times to be confirmed.
(+) Indicates Ticketed Event. Tickets Available from www.eventbrite.co.uk or contact Ben Randall, 0770 458 5435.