Knee deep in mud, gale force winds and hauling millions of chairs across a field in Swindon, was not how we were expecting our internship to begin.
OK so maybe we were only ankle deep, and it was probably more of a strong gust than a gale… and there were probably only 1000 chairs but you’ve got to have a dramatic opener for your first proper CVM blog. We were thrown in at the deep end and were told to expect the weekend to look like a lovechild of New Wine and Top Gear, which it really was. This is how two young men in their late teens survived The Gathering XII…
Jack Undrell: Diary Entry
Thursday was jam-packed, muddy but HOT! All the team started to look like tomatoes after a couple of hours. We worked from midday until late evening, washing up, putting up tents and marquees. At the end of play we had fish & chips before a well-earned sleep.
Friday morning was mental! The boss wanted us to sort out a lot of last minute preparation before 800 men arrived. My main duty was assigned to me: Managing the CVM stand, which was brilliant. It was amazing talking to everyone who came through check-in and later that evening, I got to listen to Jon Burns. As a football and rugby fan, his story was incredible.
Saturday, what can I say, the blokes must have got a lot out of the sessions as the resources were flying off the stand. Darrell Tunningley went on to give his testimony of how God transformed him from a heroin addict and a convicted armed robber to a church minister, which was incredible. However, for me, the best moment of the weekend was seeing around 40 men commit their lives to Jesus later that night.
On Sunday morning we all shared communion, (first time for some blokes) and quite a surreal experience for me. Before we set off for home, I knelt with hundreds of men to meet with Jesus in the mud.
Looking forward to next year!
Andy Cozens: Diary Entry
I couldn’t have thought of a more effective way of getting to know my colleagues than sharing a campsite and actively serving Christ with them. The type of bond that was formed between me, Jack and the team over the weekend would have probably taken over a month to form if we’d just been sat at CVM HQ.
Having such a close band of brothers and sisters made the kit-hauling, dishwashing, tea making and errand running so much more easy to cope with. Not to say that it wasn’t hard work, but it would have been much harder without the team’s general supportive attitude towards each other.
Within the CVM team was the camera-team, which I was blessed enough to be a part of. It was our job to capture all the main meetings, seminars and worship times with four old BBC cameras.
I had prayed a lot before joining CVM that I would be able to use the gifts and skills that God had given me to bring glory to him and already, on the second day, I was doing just that. What an answer to prayer!
Without doubt the best part of the weekend was 40 guys came to be prayed for after a Gospel message. It was at this moment when I realised how much God had been working over the weekend.
Who knows what happened when those men arrived home again but my prayers are definitely with them and their families. The Gathering XII gave me a new heart for men’s ministry and I am so glad to have joined a movement that is so effectively making Christ known to so many men.
All the Best,