by Andy Bannister
In the run-up to Christmas, I spoke at Glasgow Cathedral for the joint Carol Service of Glasgow Caledonian and Glasgow Strathclyde University Christian Unions. It was a fantastic event in an amazing location, with hundreds and hundreds of people in the packed Cathedral. Lots of the students had invited non-Christian friends. University carol services offer great evangelistic opportunities, and the students really made the most of it in Glasgow.
It was a beautiful evening of carols and Christmas music and then I spoke for about half an hour, on the topic of “the perfect gift”. I looked at the qualities of the perfect Christmas gift which are that it is personal (it reflects your relationship with that person), practical (it’s actually usable, not something that they are going to just throw in a cupboard and never use again), it’s paid for (you don’t want to be paying it off on your credit card for the next year). Then of course I segued to the gospel showing that God’s gift that first Christmas was personal (it was God come in the flesh, it was Immanuel – God with us), practical because it dealt with our need for forgiveness, reconciliation, and our sin being dealt with. Of course, it was also paid for, because you can’t understand Christmas without also looking at Easter, which is the price that Jesus paid for us.
It was a huge privilege to share that message with the students. A couple of weeks later I received a lovely e-mail from the CU saying that they felt it had gone well, and that it touched lots of people, and led to many useful conversations afterwards. I’m back there to do a mission week, for the University in 2019, so it was a good kind of set up for that.
The leaders of the Strathclyde and Glasgow Caledonian University CU’s added their own comments to Andy’s report.
It was great event, Andy spoke well and the gospel was clearly portrayed to everyone, as far as I know we’ve had at least 10 people respond which makes it all worth it! We’re going through a time of real growth at Caley CU with people hearing and responding to the gospel, students are genuinely interested in what we have to tell them and the Carol service is always one of the best ways to do this! Thank you for your support for us and with this event, it is hugely appreciated!
-Callum, President of Glasgow Caledonian Christian Union
The Carol Service was fantastic, we were so encouraged. Andy spoke very well, exactly the tone we were looking for and incredibly engaging. There were a few responses from people who were interesting in finding out more, so we are just praying that the Lord will bless them as they pursue that. It’s made us really excited for Andy coming to speak at our Events Week next year!
-Kirsty, Vice-President, Strathclyde University Christian Union