News Update February 2018
Billy-Graham
Billy Graham – a godly man with a simple message 

We are joining with Christians around the world thanking God for the legacy of evangelist Dr Billy Graham who died on Wednesday. Billy Graham came to the UK in the mid 1940s to set up British Youth for Christ. Alongside the impact of the massive stadium events he led, YFC has had a lasting impact on the spiritual life of our nation. Half a century later, I was invited to lead YFC's ministry. I spent 28 years in all, working as an evangelist with YFC, sharing the same message Billy Graham took to millions worldwide: the cross changes everything, and the decision to follow Jesus Christ is the best decision anyone can ever make. It’s a simple message, with a direct invitation. As we prepare for Easter this year, let’s give that same invitation to our friends, colleagues and family members. Join us as we pray that churches in every village, town and city will use the unique opportunity of Easter to invite people to find out more about Jesus and discover the power of the cross to transform lives. 

Roy Crowne
HOPE’s executive director
Giving HOPE at Easter
More than 180,000 copies of the HOPE at Easter magazine have been ordered for churches to distribute with invitations to Easter services. That includes a test-run door-to-door Royal Mail delivery of 50,000 magazines to homes in Eastbourne, where churches are working together to make Jesus known. There are just 20,000 copies left, so place your order soon, so we can decide if a further print-run is needed. 

Who-doyou-say-I-amHOPE at Easter is packed with topical features aimed to give easy ways to start a conversation about Jesus. There's a dedicated website for readers to find out more at www.easterhope.org.uk. And for those who want to know more, the gift book Who Do You Say I Am? takes readers on a journey of discovery with interviews, testimonies and quotes from the eye-witness accounts in the Gospels. Copies are available in packs of 10 for £11.50. Order copies here.

Rev David Bacon, Vicar of St Barnabas Church in Darwen, Lancashire has been using Who Do You Say I Am? as the basis for sermons at baptisms. He then gives away copies of the book to guests. Four out of the five families who came to the church recently for a baptism are now attending church regularly. The Easter Hope video to accompany Who Do You Say I Am? can be dowloaded here.

Easter-Hope

Visit www.easterhope.org.uk to see the website designed for HOPE at Easter magazine readers.
St-Davids-DaySt David’s Day celebrations

In Wales local churches are giving away 12,000 copies of a bi-lingual, English/Welsh mini-magazine produced to celebrate St David’s Day. One small village church is giving a copy to each of the 2,000 homes in their area. Please pray for the church in Wales as they make Jesus known this Easter.
Prison HOPE
We are thrilled to hear stories from Britain and beyond of the impact of 40 Stories of HOPE. One CMS Mission Partner working in an English-speaking prison ministry in Lima, Peru, is using the book for weekly group studies with prisoners and ex-offenders. She said, ‘The majority of the women that we work with are/have been on cocaine smuggling charges so Lee's story really struck a chord with them. One woman who normally doesn't concentrate during our Bible studies was captivated - we've never seen her concentrate so hard.'
Prison

Comments from prisoners and ex-prisoners include: "I just wish the stories were longer." 
"I read the whole book, I didn't want to stop reading it.", "Thank you for this book....it's very inspiring...","Yes I know we are meant to be reading a bit each day but I got too excited that's why I'm reading it again…"

More than 15,000 prisoners in the UK have received a free copy of the book and chaplains are using it to lead study groups during Lent in many prisons. The BBC Radio 4 Sunday Worship service is using the readings and themes from the book, and Churches Together in Britain and Ireland have made the weekly studies their Lent course for 2018 – this can be downloaded here. Do let us know how you are using the book.
One Friday
Our partners CPO have produced a set of 14 posters and postcards linked to themes in 40 Stories of HOPE. These are part of the range of resources available for inter-church and community groups to retell the story of the Passion of Jesus in Easter week and especially on Good Friday. For more info visit www.onefriday.info
Take the 40 Acts challenge 
40actsStewardship’s 40 Acts Challenge encourages generosity throughout the six weeks leading up to Easter. And this year there are community challenges provided in partnership with HOPE as well as the individual challenges. Find out more here 
Game-ChangersThe Talking Jesus course
Looking for ways to help people in your church become more confident to talk about Jesus? First-century Game Changers is a six-session group study book by Roy Crowne and Laurence Singlehurst, complete with a leaders' guide to help small groups engage with the Bible and apply it to their lives. Each study includes a Bible passage, some key research and thoughts, questions to discuss, action points and prayer guidance. Order copies here

We are also working on a new video-based Talking Jesus course to be launched at Spring Harvest this Easter – more details next month.
Shropshire… Rochester… your village, town or city?
Churches in villages, towns and cities across the country have launched HOPE 2018 with exciting plans being made. Click here to see what Shropshire HOPE is doing. Click here to watch a video from Rochester. Contact the HOPE office to share what you have planned so we can be praying for you.

Thanks so much for all you are doing to make Jesus known. Do get in touch if there ways in which we can serve you and the churches in your area, as together we seek to bring hope to our villages, towns and cities. The HOPE team prays regularly for you, thanking God for our partnership in the gospel. Do let us know of any specific prayer requests or events we can pray for as churches work together to point people to Jesus in your area.

Love from the HOPE team