Gareth Benton, pastor, at The King’s Church, Portsmouth, talks about the relevance of the church to young people
Non-churchgoers can have this perception that young people have deserted the church.
Sunday worship can be seen as out of date, out of touch and irrelevant by many.
It is true that the message of Jesus has not changed for the past two thousand years.
It is amazing news for everyone, a message of hope and love.
And it’s actually never been more relevant.
I struggle to remember meeting anyone that has said ‘I am loved too much.’
On the contrary, I see a lot of young people that struggle with their sense of identity and self-worth.
As a parent of three, my biggest goal for my children is for them to understand that they are loved.
The message of Jesus couldn’t been more up to date for this generation.
The simple truth is that God is head over heels in love with us.
While some young people find it difficult to connect with church, the experience of King’s Church and other churches across Portsmouth, is that there is a spiritual hunger within young people.
Every Sunday I see such a diverse range of ages – families, young couples, single professionals, older families, children and yes – teenagers and students.
While older people do make up an integral part of the King’s Church congregation, we are also blessed with an incredible bunch of young people with a tremendous passion for life, for this city and for serving God.
We believe that the message never changes but the way that we communicate this message can.
With this in mind we encourage our young people to get involved in church life and to be confident to use the gifts God has given them.
Young people are not just the church of tomorrow, they are the church of today.
My wife Audrey and I lead the King’s Church and love being part of the Somerstown community.
We meet every Sunday at 10.30am in St Peter’s Church, Somers Rd, PO5 4QA.
King’s also run a debt advice centre called CAP (Christians against Poverty) and Portsmouth Foodbank in partnership with North End and Paulsgrove Baptist churches.
For details of these, other activities and Sunday services please visit kingschurchportsmouth.co.uk.
Alternatively, contact the church office on firstname.lastname@example.org or phone (023) 9298 7977.