Urban Expression @ 25
This year Urban Expression celebrates 25 years of mission in the margins, and now has teams across the UK from Cornwall to Glasgow and Belfast to Hull. Stuart Murray-Williams reports on a gathering to mark the anniversary
Urban Expression began in 1997 when our first team was deployed to Shadwell in East London. So 2022 marks our 25th anniversary, which we celebrated at a community weekend festival in mid-June. Over 80 of us (it would have been well over 90 but for Covid infections) gathered at a great venue near Uttoxeter for a weekend of reflection, worship, thanksgiving, good food, diverse activities for all ages and conversations about the future.
It was great to be with those who have journeyed with us for many years, others who have joined us in the past year or two, and some who are wondering about joining Urban Expression. We now have mission partners in 24 locations across the UK, but the challenge of mission on the margins is as great as ever and we are glad to recommit ourselves to this and to continue to invite others to join us.
A new initiative we are supporting is Coastal Expression, a response to the often-unrecognised deprivation and spiritual needs of many coastal communities. We are also partnering with the Ascension Trust to offer the Black Light course as we explore ways of partnering in multicultural mission. And the Crucible course, which we have been running since 2005, will be operating in more diverse and flexible ways from the autumn.
Do get in touch if you want to find out more or visit www.urbanexpression.org.uk, www.cruciblecourse.org.uk or www.blacklightcourse.uk
Stuart Murray-Williams has been involved since Urban Expression began. He looks after teams in London and the south-east, teaches on the Crucible Course and provides some of the strategic direction for Urban Expression