United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands


First Global Alpha Training event held in Cayman

Under the leadership of the Rev. Graham Singh and Mr. Giancarlo Riveros, Caribbean and South America Representative for Alpha International, the first ever Global Alpha Training event was held in Cayman on the 4th – 6th November 2011. Pastors and leaders of a number of local churches took part in the event, which was held at the Savannah United Church. The focus for the Friday and Saturday sessions was the training of leaders to facilitate the Alpha Course, although there were also brief presentations on Alpha for Prisons, Alpha in the Workplace, Marriage Alpha, Parenting Teenagers and Parenting Children courses, etc., all of which have proven to be highly effective tools to help build Christ’s Kingdom and provide salvation, as well as building hope and empowerment for families and individuals. The Sunday evening session focused on training for facilitating the Youth Alpha course (which is currently being run at the John Gray Memorial United Church in West Bay) and that was attended by a number of Youth Leaders and young adults and others who work with young people, as well as some of those who had attended the ‘Classic Alpha’ training. Also accompanying Mr. Riveros and Rev. Singh and assisting in leading the training were two others from the latter’s church, Mr. Gerard Sebastian and Mr. Tim Malcolm, and Mr. and Mrs. Paul Sharp, who are active leaders of Alpha at the Church of the Transfiguration in Jamaica. (While on the Island, Rev. Singh and Mr. Sebastian also took part in a service at the Prison as a guest of Mrs. Cathy Gomez of Elmslie United Church, who has long been active as a passionate volunteer in the prison ministry.)

Alpha is a low-pressure, fun and informative course. It is a place to relax, share your thoughts and explore the meaning of life. The course is designed primarily for people who don't go to church, but are interested in the Christian faith. The Alpha course began in the late 1970s at Holy Trinity Church, Brompton, in the UK, as a means of helping new Christians learn more about the Christian faith. In 1990, former barrister the Rev. Nicky Gumbel realised the potential of the Alpha course to appeal to a wider audience, and adapted the course to make it inclusive for anyone interested in the Christian faith. The Alpha course spread during the 1990s, initially in the UK and then internationally, as more and more churches and groups found it a helpful and informal way to discuss questions about the Christian faith. There are now over 55,000 courses worldwide in 166 countries. Alpha is supported by all the major denominations. Over 16 million people worldwide have now attended an Alpha course! The United Church will continue to offer various Alpha courses in its congregations and a number of other Denominations are expected to start or re-start Alpha courses shortly also as a result of the training. Keep your eyes and ears open for news of an upcoming Alpha course – and invite a friend come and see!

The local television station Cayman 27 interviewed the Rev. Graham Singh and Mrs. Jennifer Dilbert, one of the local organisers of the Global Alpha Training event in Cayman, and you can learn more about Alpha and the weekend in Cayman by going to the segment on Cayman 27 (click here).

Posted by: Administrator Thursday Nov 10, 2011 13:25
Categories: Savannah, Youth | Tags:

United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands