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26 April 2012

2,700 young Christians commissioned at St Paul's


St Paul’s Cathedral in the heart of the City of London was filled to overflowing on Tuesday (24 April) with young Christians passionate about serving God this year.

As part of the Diocese of London’s, the2012 initiative, more than 2,700 young people have signed up from 300 different churches across the capital to volunteer and serve during the Olympics.

Organisers had hoped they would get 2,012 young people signed up, but the initiative has proved so popular, that numbers far exceeded the original target.

Members of the2012 are aged 13-35 and come from all over London and a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences.

Lidija Mavra, a member of the2012 and founder of the social enterprise, Sock Mob, said: “I feel really privileged to be part of the 2012 service at St Paul's - it's a wonderful way of bringing young Christians together from all across London to reflect upon and share ideas on how we can make London a better place in 2012.”

At the St Paul’s event, the ambassadors were formally commissioned by the Bishop of London, during an event which included worship from Tim Hughes and music from The Psalm Drummers and the Twyford Church of England High School Gospel Choir, winners of the BBC’s gospel choir of the year competition on Songs of Praise.

Prayers at the service were led by Pete Greig, founder of 24/7 Prayer, who is helping to coordinate 70 days of prayer through 1,000 communities across the UK with the Olympic Torch Relay, starting in Lands End on 19 May.

Organiser Ruth Bushyager said: “We wanted to have an initiative that empowered and recognised the younger generation and helped each person take the next step of confidence in knowing, living, and sharing their faith in this amazing world city.

“The Commissioning service was just incredible – seeing something of the joy and passion of so many young people worshipping in unity was extraordinary. They are committed to being mission-focussed disciples, serving their communities and ‘giving reason for the hope that is within them’ and this fills me with hope for the growth of the Kingdom of God and the future of the church in London.”

Pete Greig, of 24-7 Prayer and Alpha International, added: “It's thrilling to see thousands of young people galvanised by the Olympics, catalysed by their faith and mobilised to make a difference in our communities this year. With so many negative headlines about looting and knife-crime, hoodies and youth unemployment, the2012 initiative celebrates the fact that most young people in our capital are fundamentally good and that Christian faith is as relevant as ever. I’m delighted to be involved.”