Time has flown so quickly! It feels like only yesterday CEYC went to Kenya. On the 8th -14th April, Shakeel (Chair of CEYC) and Ed (Intern) were in Kenya to attend the first CAPA Youth Congress. It was an amazing week looking at Releasing Youth Potential. We arrived at a lush and vibrant Nairobi. The sun radiated throughout the city and a gentle breeze kept the temperature at a gentle level. It was a welcome change from the snow and ice we had received in Britain earlier in the month!
"Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity." - 1 Tim. 4:12
Shakeel – CEYC Chair Welcome
Hello everyone! My name is Shakeel, I am the CEYC representative for Peterborough Diocese, and I have just come on board the CEYC team as its new Chair. Since the completion of my Theology degree in 2017, I’ve been working as a church intern at St. Andrews Church Kettering, as a part of Peterborough Diocese’s ministry experience scheme.
During CEYC’s fantastic November residential only a few weeks ago I talked to a number of people about one of the Church of England’s most defining, wonderful and expensive aspects: our buildings.
First I think it’s best and indeed most helpful to define the difference between our Churches and Church buildings. Churches, as defined in the New Testament, are groups of Christians who gather to pray, worship and teach in the presence of God. Church buildings are the places in which these groups of Christians meet. In the Church of England we sometimes fall into the trap of calling our buildings the “Churches” and believing that a group of Christians can only call themselves a “Church” if they meet in one of these buildings.
It would be good to keep this in the front of your mind while I discuss the Church and its buildings.
Plumbing the Breadth
“And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” (Ephesian 3:17-19, NIV)
I would like to start by acknowledging that the usual term is “plumbing the depths”. I’m sure it is a term that most of us have come across at some point or another. The original nautical term comes from when a sailor would lower a lead weight on a piece of rope to the bottom of the waters. This would allow them to gauge how deep the waters were. I have heard this being applied to God’s love many times. We are called to push deeper into His love, to be surrounded and upheld by it. However, we are also called to explore the breadth, the length and the height of God’s love.
My name is Edward Cox. I am known as Ed, Edy, Smed, Edwardian, Teddy, Tedward… well you get the drift. I have spent the last 24 years doing a whole range of different things, all earning me these different names. For the last 6 years, I have been working as a Science Technician in a Secondary School. This has earned me the rather envious title of “that Science Tech guy”. I have been a voluntary youth worker (or yooff worker) on and off for the last 6 years too. This has earned me the title of “Uncle Smedward”. or “Mummy Smed” (depending on what particular mood the youth are in). I have been married for the last 4 years and I am a proud cat owner, which has earned me the title of “Eeeeddd” and “provider of food” respectively.
This next step of my journey is a real leap of faith for me. I am leaving a comfortable job, at a School that I have been at for 13 years (since Y8!). I am trusting that God will provide (has so far!). Whilst I look ahead to the next 12 months I know that I will be meeting with and talking to a lot of different people. I will be representing and supporting CEYC in many different places and areas. Every time I meet someone they will probably have their own name for me.
In these next 12 months, what I truly hope for is that when people remember my name, they will remember Joy and Grace. The very same Joy and Grace that CEYC embodies and lives out. So, for those of you who pray, please pray that I will be filled with that Joy and Grace and share it with all those that I meet. As I start my journey serving and supporting CEYC that is all I can hope for.
I look forward to meeting you all,
What a whirlwind! Tomorrow (15th June) is my last day working as intern for CEYC as I start my new job next week! The last nine months have gone so fast and it feels strange that after seven years as a diocesan rep, core group member or intern I’ll be back to a member of CEYC with no roles or extra responsibility!
Over the late May Bank Holiday weekend I had the fantastic opportunity to be one of 21 young people from across Europe who came together for the European Anglican / Old Catholic Youth Pilgrimage. We spent three days together learning about each other’s churches and building unity between them. We reflected on ourselves, our journeys and on the wider journeys of our churches. [Read more…] about Anglican-Old Catholic Youth Pilgrimage
Hannah Pye, previously the Children, Youth & Family Worker in the Tas Valley Team Ministry and now Chair of the Church of England Youth Council, describes the impact of a recent discussion among young Christians on the ethical and environmental dilemmas thrown up by Micah 6:8.
One of the questions we get asked a lot is ‘what makes a good CEYC Diocesan representative’ or ‘what’s the best way to select our reps’. If I’m honest there isn’t really one good way! Each diocese is so unique that only they can know the best way to nominate people in their area. I was asked to come along to CEYC when I was sixteen and have been involved in one way or another since then.
[Read more…] about A CEYC Journey
So… 2 months! It feels like both yesterday and years ago that I started as the intern! What a whirlwind it’s been! It’s been great to work with so many of you to help make CEYC bigger and better than before! Here’s a quick round up of what I’ve been up to over the last 2 months:
[Read more…] about 2 Months In
The ParliaMentors scheme is a fantastically exciting project run by Three Faiths Forum (3FF) which enables university students to create social change in the communities they live in through providing the students with access to networks, politicians and knowledge. CEYC was lucky enough to be invited to join them in celebrating the 10th Birthday of the scheme!
[Read more…] about ParliaMentors Launch – 8.09.2016
I’m probably the world’s least natural blog writer… I’ve been told that I need to introduce myself to you and figured it’s probably easier if I pretend to interview myself so here goes!
[Read more…] about Introducing Bethan, our Intern!
It can be very hard thinking of something to blog or publicly speak about. I find it hard as a young person. Even at the tender age of 22 I am still seen as a young person, something that I quite relish in to be honest. However I do often wonder to myself; when do I reach that point where I am no longer young? [Read more…] about Precious Thoughts
‘Visions must be lived, not laminated‘ – Stephen Conway, Bishop of Ely
Every day we are affected and shaped by our own visions, and the visions of others. Human beings are deeply creative hopers and dreamers. What are we without vision?
But we can all too easily forget to live out visions. As the Bishop of Ely reminded General Synod members meeting last month, visions must be lived out. [Read more…] about What’s your vision?
I very much enjoyed July’s synod. It was so exciting to share synod with four friends, our CEYC synod observers. However this Synod had a very different feel from others – the new synod group of 500 odd members is still forming and building new relationships with a newly elected membership [Read more…] about General Synod, July 2016 – Alex Podd