Saturday 31st March 2012 saw the launch of Street Pastors in Newbury. Volunteers from churches across the town, having completed mandatory training, walked into Newbury town centre to bring God’s love to the revellers who were in and around the local bars and nightclubs.
Each Saturday night, from about 10.30pm onwards, the Street Pastors patrol the streets of Newbury town centre. Wearing distinctive uniforms and in teams, we walk the streets, outside bars and nightclubs and normally finish around 4am each Sunday morning.
Our teams go out with pockets full of lollipops and Lovehearts, bottles of water and a bag of flip-flops. It is amazing how offering lollipops to a person builds relationships and gives someone a well needed sugar boost. Girls having consumed too much drink, and who are unable to balance on their high heeled shoes, appreciate the offer of a free pair of flip-flops to make their journey home much easier.
The response that we have received from the regulars in the bars, clubs, passers by, door staff and the police has been very positive; we have been made very welcome. We make it clear to people that we are not there to preach, but to offer practical help and support. We aim to solve problems, before they become serious, or official. Sometimes, people approach us and ask questions, as they see us as their friends. Many of us can tell of the real encounters we have had, giving us the opportunity to share testimony of our personal relationship with Jesus.
We consider prayer cover for the Street Pastors is very important, when we are out. We are very thankful to our team of Prayer Pastors who remain at base, whilst we walk the streets, and for those at home who also faithfully pray for us.
If you feel God is calling you to join “Newbury Street Pastors” (you are only required as a volunteer to walk 1 evening per month), or if you would like to join our prayer team, please email us or contact us on the number above.
Contact: Deborah Arden-Hunt