This June RealityBites director, Mark Roques, was invited to deliver his workshop on Celebrity Culture, Human Trafficking and Christian Faith in a mission week at Notre Dame Catholic Sixth Form College in Leeds.

Mark delivered four one hour lessons to about 100 sixth formers and the feedback from both staff and pupils was excellent. One teacher opined – “this is ‘spot on’ and exactly what these young people need to hear”. Peter Smith, the Head of Philosophy, Theology and Ethics said that the lectures had been “fantastic’”

What is distinctive about RealityBites is the compare and contrast methodology that works so powerfully in any missionary context. For this was a mission week and proclamation of Christian truth was an essential part of the proceedings.

We are convinced that young people need to understand the dominant western religion of consumerism (‘Tesco ergo sum’) as they engage with a gospel message. We do this by comparing Christian and consumerist beliefs.

We outline how committed consumerists (Katie Price etc) live in their story and then how Christians (Randy Lewis etc) live in the biblical story with Jesus at the very centre. For this is faith in action… stories that shock, puzzle and delight.

Consider the contrast between Tarzan, the human trafficker and Shay Cullen the missionary priest who rescues children from brothels and prisons in the Philippines. Ponder how Mark explained the consumerist view of ‘salvation’: “Abundant money and leisure will allow me to consume as much as I like. Then I will be happy!” and then outlined the Christian alternative: “God is restoring His creation through the death and resurrection of his Son Jesus. Your sins can be wiped out!”

RealityBites is committed to innovative communication of the Christian faith, and we do ask for your prayers as we go into schools and talk to young people about God’s kingdom of reconciliation, peace and love.

Next month we will be in Newcastle.

Mark Roques

Mark Roques

Mark taught Philosophy and Religious Education at Prior Park College, Bath, for many years. As Director of RealityBites he has developed a rich range of resources for youth workers and teachers. He has spoken at conferences in the UK, Holland, South Korea, Spain, Australia and New Zealand. Mark is a lively storyteller and the author of four books, including The Spy, the Rat and the Bed of Nails: Creative Ways of Talking about Christian Faith. His work is focused on storytelling and how this can help us to communicate the Christian faith. He has written many articles for the Baptist Times, RE Today, Youthscape, Direction magazine and the Christian Teachers Journal.