UCCF and Spring Harvest part company
The Universities and Colleges Christian Fellowship (UCCF) and Keswick Ministries have ended a 14 year partnership with the Charismatic holiday organisation Spring Harvest, bringing to an end their joint Bible Study weeks, aimed at young people, called Word Alive.
In a statement issued by UCCF, the reason for the split is said to be the insistence of Spring Harvest that Rev. Steve Chalke, one of the Spring Harvest Event Leadership Team and a member of their Council of Management, be allowed to preach from the Word Alive platform.
In 2003 Steve Chalke wrote The Lost Message of Jesus. In it, he promoted a heretical view of the nature of the atonement and hit national media headlines with his colourful denials of penal substitution. The Word Alive committee, of which UCCF is a part, decided that Mr Chalke could not teach from a Word Alive platform. This stance appears to have been shared by Keswick, who refer to problems with arranging the different events.
However, Spring Harvest has refuted UCCF’s account, claiming the issue was inability to accommodate the Word Alive event in an increasingly busy Spring Harvest schedule. It disputes the UCCF’s statement as being ‘either misunderstanding (wilful or otherwise) or total fabrication’ and insists Spring Harvest continues to ‘stand for the same faith and the same gospel’.