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London church helps spread vision for Christian education

Written on July 13th, 2009

Christian schools collaborate to raise awareness

West London Alliance Church helped spread the vision for Christian education on a Sunday morning this past school year.

A local Christian high school and three elementary schools were able to make brief presentations during the church’s two morning services. The schools also set up information booths in the church foyer for those who wanted to learn more after the services.

Pastor Mike Wilkins says he believes the event made an impact on his congregation of about 700 people.

He attributes this largely to the choir from London District Christian Secondary School (LDCSS), which sang several musical numbers and which he describes as a “really impressive show of what might going on among teenagers in London if you know where to look.”

“Because there was a 75-voice choir embedded in the service everybody got in on it,” he says. “So everybody sensed the energy and the vision (for Christian education) and I think the impact was more widespread.”

Kerry Wilson of LDCSS was the driving force behind the Christian education Sunday.

Wilson, who stepped into the newly created role of director of advancement and curriculum this past school year, has been actively building relationships with other Christian schools in the area “so that we’re working as a unit promoting Christian education.”

She has also been connecting with area churches with a view to partnering to “advance the kingdom of God.”

Co-ordinating a Christian education Sunday at a local church was one way to realize both of these objectives.

Wilson says as a result there are now people in the city who know about LDCSS and other Christian schools who previously had no idea these schools existed.

Wilkins agrees.

“I think I would say the net effect of this particular emphasis was to catch people up who were not in the know to the fact that there’s a vibrant educational alternative doing very well,” he says. He adds that he’s open to repeating this sort of idea every two years or so to pick up the newcomers. London Alliance first hosted a Christian education Sunday several years ago.

“The turnover in the church is so brisk with normal church attrition and people transferring in and out of town that I think this was a whole new deal for a lot in the church family,” says Wilkins.

In addition to the church event, LDCSS has partnered this past year with area Christian schools on several other projects. Two of these have been surveying Christian families on their views of Christian education and designing a radio promotion.

“We’ve definitely seen an increased interest in working together as a Christian school community in the city and that was really one of my big goals for this year,” says Wilson, noting the hope is that eventually the collaborative efforts will have an effect on school enrollment as well.