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150,000 young people set to hear the gospel as mission charity begins new UK schools tour

by Marcus Jones

Christian youth charity The Message Trust says it will take the good news of Jesus to 150,000 young people through its schools work this year.

It's launching the Higher Tour 2020, which sees music bands and mission teams from the organisation head into schools across the country.

Working with local youth workers, they provide assemblies and RE lessons.

All the young people they come in contact with are then invited to a gig to enjoy music from bands such as SoulBox and Brightline. They'll then be given the opportunity to respond to the gospel presentation they will have heard.

Each person who makes a commitment to Christ is then linked in to a local youth worker to continue discipleship.

Andy Hawthorne founder and Chief Executive of The Message Trust told Premier he's excited to hear what comes of the tour.

He said: "We're not ashamed of the gospel. We're sad that so many young people are leaving the church but we don't think God has finished with us yet.

"We'll visit more schools than ever this year, which is so gratifying for an old bloke like me."

The reach of the tour may surprise some at a time where many complain that Christianity is being squeezed out of schools.

"We're sensitive," Hawthorne said. "And we tie everything into the national curriculum - young people have to be taught about the Christian faith as part of that curriculum.

"In times of Q and A with young people we answer honestly, based on what the Bible says and schools are wide open."

The tour begins this week in North Wales and ends in Manchester in December.

For the first time the tour will also visit Germany.

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