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Muslims and atheists hear the gospel at Speakers’ Corner

July 2014 | by Alan Pibworth

The world famous Speakers’ Corner, Hyde Park, London, attracts thousands of tourists from every country in the world. Once the place for freedom of speech at public executions, this space provides a great opportunity for a team of 80 Christians to preach and witness for the Lord Jesus.

Where else can you give a Gospel to a Saudi Arabian and freely preach Christ to Chinese, Russians, Lithuanians, Kuwaitis and citizens of Western Europe? Where else do people come just to hear what you have to say?

The United Beach Mission’s ‘Christian Answer’ team had that opportunity over the Spring bank holiday weekend (23-26 May); to preach the gospel; share what Christ had done in their lives; give literature in various languages, and follow up in the subsequent weeks. They were encouraged that so many people were open to the gospel.

Team opportunities

Sixth form student Bethan from Gateshead, who was on the team for the first time, said, ‘I talked to a couple from Saudi Arabia who said they would be accepted into heaven because of the works they had done. I explained how Jesus said he was the only way to God. It started to rain, but we continued the conversation and they really listened and asked questions about how I became a Christian’.

Christela, a French Christian, enthusiastic after a similar outreach team in Montreuil, Paris, said, ‘Lots of people stopped and listened to what the preachers had to say, and we had great opportunities. There were Catholics, Muslims, atheists and people from everywhere’.

Michael, an Arabic-speaking Christian, said, ‘It is a wonderful opportunity, when you think of it, because the Bible isn’t allowed in Saudi Arabia, and yet here people can listen to our preaching and sharing of the gospel. I found that almost every Muslim accepted a gospel in Arabic’.

Philip, a structural engineer in Southampton, talked with a couple from Russia. They were glad to take literature and said they would go to the Christian Answer website, and look up more on Christian belief; they might email for more information.

Jonathan, a physio from the West Midlands, spoke to a Buddhist from China who listened and then said he would take more literature, as he had lots of time to read.

Steve Taylor from Liverpool said, ‘A student from Kings College London was amazed to find that I didn’t believe in evolution. But as we discussed, it became apparent he hadn’t considered any of the problems with that theory. So we were able to talk through these and what the Bible said about Jesus’ life, death and resurrection.

‘As I was talking he let me know his mother had been converted and I felt that our conversation was a result of her prayers’.

Challenging questions

‘As always, we got lots of challenging questions from hecklers’, said team leader Dave Ainscough, ‘but that is all part and parcel of sharing your faith. We are hoping that those who are new to this will have more confidence to go back home and witness’.

UBM Christian Answer teams are operating this summer in Chester, Canterbury, Edinburgh, Bournemouth, Kirkby, London, France and Ireland, as well as on beaches in England and Wales. There is a very real need for more workers this summer (further information: www.ubm.org.uk and 0113 2304362).

Alan Pibworth