Matt is a 3rd year student, studying in Manchester. He’s passionate about seeing his friends find hope in life through meeting Jesus. Last year, he felt God gave him a big dream and took a bold step to make it a reality. This is his story…
In the summer of 2021, I felt like God was asking me to start a church in my home at University in Manchester, and so, when I came back to uni in September that year I asked around - wondering if anyone would be up for coming to a home-church in a small 3 person house in Manchester and low and behold… no-one was interested!
Being a little bit disheartened, I thought I’d take another route. One of my friends, who is on my course at uni, had talked to me about faith previously so I asked him if he would like to learn more about Jesus. He said it sounded awesome, and so we decided every Monday he could come to my house to pray, read the bible, eat some food, explore faith and then watch a film together. We called it ‘Wholesome Mondays’. For a while, it was just us two, but as people started inviting us to do stuff on Monday evenings, we said that we were unavailable because we were exploring faith. I didn’t think it sounded like something they would want to join in on. But, through that, by December we had four or five regulars coming to Wholesome Mondays that had never given much thought to learning about the Gospel before.
"It felt appropriate to baptise him in my tiny bath in my University house..."
Through this group, we’ve seen God move in so many ways! We’ve had amazing meals, conversations, great films but more importantly chats about the Bible as a group. Everyone is amazingly open and honest! People are so happy to be prayed for and they are learning to pray themselves. Towards the end of last term, the coursemate that I started this whole journey with gave his life to Jesus. It felt appropriate to baptise him in my tiny bath in my University house on a Wholesome Monday.
It was amazing to see how nobody wanted to come to a church in my home on a Sunday in September, but by December we had had a baptism in that same home. We have been praying in that home, reading the Bible in that home, sharing meals in that home, people have been openly giving and sharing with each other, relationships have been built and there’s been leadership in that home - all of these things are what the church is and does.
The best news of all, I believe, is that this is literally just the beginning - God is on the move! God has plans for these relationships and people that go far beyond what any of us can imagine, and I can’t wait to see my friends step into that!
My encouragement for any student at university would be to listen to what God is asking you to do with your coursemates, housemates, flatmates and take a step of faith, even if it feels like a risk. You will be so amazed at how open people are to exploring faith. All you need to do is be bold, pray and be led by the spirit and God will do the rest!