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Church News

Church converted to boxing ring as five fighters get baptised

by Heather Preston

Five boxers have dedicated their lives to Jesus at a ringside baptism service in East London.

The men who came to faith in God through a missional boxing project in Romford shared their testimonies to friends and family in a ceremony set out like a boxing match.

Stormzy was the backing track to the event at the Church of the Good Shepherd, where seats were laid out in the round with a baptismal pool in the centre, in a bid to "put participants at ease".

Following his submersion, one boxer said: "I feel like a clean person and the worries are off my shoulders," while another shared how his journey of faith had "re-lit the fire and belief that was always there, and with the help of the other guys, I discovered that it was I that was lost. 

"Being a part of this community has made me want to be a better person," he added.  

Church minister Dave Harrigan, launched The Good Shepherd Boxing Community in 2015, as a hub for the local community to build relationships and encounter God.

He said: "This baptism is a fulfilment of our vision for pioneer ministry and is exciting proof that pioneer projects such as the Good Shepherd Boxing Community are an effective way of being 'church' for people who live outside the traditional bounds of the regular church and who wouldn't normally attend a Sunday service."

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