My story of being involved with Hope Church started when I was 13 years old. I had been going to another church in Luton with my family all my life and was just about to transition from the kids work into the youth. I was excited to go hang out with the ‘big kids’ like my brother had done before me. However the midweek youth club was unfortunately closed and there was temporarily no youth leader to take this forward. A little frustrated I was also coming to the age where several of the friends I had grown up with in church were no longer attending regularly. My hunger to continue to learn about and serve God was there, but with this situation I was beginning to think why should I bother.
We saw an article in the local newspaper in September 2002 with information about a Newfrontiers church being planted in the area. We found out about the youth group they were starting, I went along and met Wayne Parsons and Linda Geevanathan who were leading it, as well as some of the youth including David May and Jen Williams. (For those of you who know Linda she was taller than me back then.)
After about a year of making friends and really enjoying the youth programme of activities I decided to make Hope Church my home. This was one of the best decisions I could have made for my Christian walk. 13 years later I have seen God use me and I have experienced so much within the church family as people have come, gone and stayed.
Hope Church and its leaders have been so releasing and encouraging which is part of the reason it is the church it is today. I’ve done things I’d never thought God would do with me and met people from varying walks of life, which is what is so great about a church family. Some particular highlights have included the floods of Newday in 2004, where heavy rain brought us together to form close friendships and encountering God in it. Getting baptised in a large tank. Watch night worship evenings, where dreams, tongues and spiritual gifts were released. Helping to launch and build our student and 20s work in 2011 named Breakout. The celebrations and worship times through the years especially at Christmas and many others. Ask me about them some time, but what I am most looking forward to is the future of Hope and what comes next, as we continue to be people obedient to God and living as family with our Hope in him.
Written by Luke Middleton