Meet fourteen-year-old Adam and hear his thoughts on the staff at Bethel, our community centre in Dagenham...
I first came to the Hub after a member of staff gave me a flyer one day. I kept coming back. It was fun and the talks were quite good. Brandon suggested I try St Elisabeth’s, where I met Stephen Hanna (the vicar), another great fella. We went on a really fun trip with great people from the church. By the of the week, I figured I'd try Christianity – it was the first time I tried religion. I like it.
One of my best friends
I'm now having one-to-ones with Lawrence (LCM worker) every Wednesday which I'm really enjoying. Most people think the Bible is just a story about what we should do and believe, but Lawrence makes it interesting and immersive.
He lets me decide the topic each week. I love video games, so we look at spiritual warfare, the Holy Spirit’s power and what he does for believers. We also look at stories like Sodom and Gomorrah (a very bad story that) and what happens to the soul after death. Lawrence is one of my best friends.
I’m not like other kids. I don’t get social media or fashion, or the obsession with kicking a muddy ball around a field. I’m sometimes ashamed of being a part of this generation. But Lawrence helps me to understand why people act the way they do and how I should respond to them.
A big part of my life
The way I see it, Jesus couldn’t have lived a better life. He was perfect, never sinning but suffering for all of them, dying for our sins in the most horrible way imaginable. He helps us in every part of our lives, we can always relate to him.
This is a great place. The staff at the centre help people get out and relate to others, to express their feelings and have belief in someplace perfect, heaven, the new Jerusalem, not just waste their lives away. It’s been a big part of my life and if people keep helping it, it can be a part of many others’.
Please pray for my mum who has two slipped discs, my brother who is autistic and has tried to kill himself several times. My dad is a milkman and works really hard. There’s a lot going on in my life at the minute. I’ve learned to cope with it thanks to Lawrence. It’s an emotional topic, but I’ve come to express it. Thanks.
Adam used to isolate himself and struggled to interact peacefully with kids his own age because of all the difficult things he was going through. But he now walks away from fights and is showing the fruit of the Spirit as a peacemaker. Adam is coming to church regularly and is much happier and more open. Please pray for him as his faith in Jesus grows and deepens and for the work in Dagenham to reach more people like Adam.
This article was first published in the summer edition of our magazine, Changing London.