Alpha Course

What is Alpha?

Alpha is an opportunity to explore the meaning of life in an informal, fun and friendly environment. The Alpha course consists of a series of talks, looking at topics including 'Who is Jesus?' and 'Why and how do I pray?', with the option of a day away. We meet for supper and each talk is followed by discussion in small groups.

Who is Alpha for?

Alpha is for everyone; no question is out of bounds and you are free to discuss as much or as little as you wish. We don’t assume any background knowledge of or belief in Christianity and everyone is welcome.

Alpha is a ten week course. You don’t have to come to the whole course – just pop along for the first night and see what you think. No pressure.

There is no charge for Alpha but you will be invited to make a donation towards the cost of the food each evening.

Come along and find out for yourself what the Alpha course is like.

For further information  email: info@thorntonmethodists.org.uk

Why Alpha?

I felt the ALPHA Course was right for me as I had not attended church since I was at school and so wished to rediscover the life of Christ and what it was all about and reflect on them from an adult point of view. I was also struggling to grieve following the death of my dad. I wasn’t sure how the ALPHA Course was going to help but something inside me felt that it was.

Although I’m generally a quiet person and speak very little normally, I felt that to get the most out of ALPHA I would have to contribute to the conversation. I couldn’t believe how easy it was! I’m glad I found the confidence to speak out as during the group discussions things that others said really did help me!

We stood in a small group, in a small room together. Praying, asking to be filled with the Holy Spirit. I stood with my eyes closed, listening to the words of prayer carefully, waiting and wondering if anything was going to happen. I found myself alone in the silence, a presence unseen surrounding me, the room bare with nothing but me and your presence. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to stay. Part of me wanted to turn and run. I was frightened. You sensed this and calmed me. Told me it was ok to feel frightened but that you would protect me. You told me you loved me and filled me with warmth, with joy, with soul. I knew in this instance you would always be with me. I was back in the room, back in the group, feeling shaken and nervous but excited. With Sally’s help, I prayed to you, asking you to forgive my sins and guide me to you, so that I may learn to be a better person, learn to love others as you do. I gave my life to Christ.

Even though it was sad that the ALPHA Course had finished it was exciting to see where my relationship with God was leading me. I have a new desire to read and study the Bible and have been making time every day for prayer, keeping a prayer book and revising it every now and then elated at how quickly my relationship with God has developed and how excited I am for a future filled with love. I would like to thank everyone on the team who organised the food, setting and helped in any way, I feel much happier and more confident in life and would totally recommend the ALPHA Course to everyone!

"I have recently completed the Alpha course. What did I learn? Firstly that within the church there are people who are genuine, caring, open and who were willing to accept me for being me. Within the atmosphere of openness I was able to ask questions and share with those in the group, openly and without fear of ridicule, and this was really helpful in my attempt to deepen my faith. Last year I experienced an illness from which I am still recovering. Feeling very broken I am learning the importance of being honest, genuine and authentic with God and with other people. Jesus can only transform us when we are honest with Him. Alpha is a really good place to start"