On the 15th and 16th June 2023, 9,000 children, teachers and church leaders attended ALIVE 2023, a massive praise party organised by the Coventry Diocesan Board of Education, Imagine Ministries and Feed the Hungry.
Taking place at the NAEC, Stoneleigh Park, ALIVE 2023 comprised four worship concerts and two mass picnics over the two days! Key Stage 2 children from the family of 76 Church of England primary schools in the Diocese of Coventry were treated to live performances from a variety of contributors. iSingPOP brought life and energy with their incredibly catchy ‘iSingPOP Praise’ songs, Chip Kendall and his Orbitron International Space Crew took 9,000 people on an intergalactic worship adventure and Shell Perris’s ‘World Changers’ anthem raised the roof! iSingPOP explored ‘how to be a world changer’ in Classroom Worship LIVE, Feed the Hungry shared their vision to see hungry people fed one meal at a time, Diocesan Director of Education, April Gold, told the story of Jesus feeding the 5000, and the Bishop of Coventry blessed everyone.
Together, the DBE, Imagine Ministries and Feed the Hungry recruited over 100 staff, contractors and volunteers to help ensure the day was a success. Many volunteers were local clergy and church members.
April Gold, Coventry Diocesan Director of Education says:
Many of our children attend very small schools, and the Covid pandemic meant that their experience of worship had been quite 2 dimensional on a screen! I wanted them to experience what it was like to worship God with 1,000s of others, to create a memory to take with them in life.
As a DBE we are passionate about local schools partnering with their parish Churches to inspire the next generation to become Kingdom Imagineers. ALIVE 2023 challenged children of all faiths and none to be emboldened and work together to challenge the adults around them to dream big and change the world
Shell Perris, Director of Imagine Ministries and ALIVE 2023 Event Manager, Host and Performer says:
ALIVE 2023 was, by far, the biggest gathering of children praising God I have ever seen! Children, teachers and church leaders were fully engaged with every aspect of the event – the music, the dancing, the teaching, times of personal reflection and prayer, the picnic – and they were all having so much fun. It just goes to show that the church of Jesus Christ is very much ALIVE and children are leading the way!
My hope and prayer is that other diocese’ and organisations will get hold of this amazing vision so that ALIVE events can be replicated across the UK and beyond. We’ve dared to dream big, we’ve shown it’s possible (anything is possible with God!) and I believe the seeds sown through ALIVE 2023 and all future ALIVE events will flourish and change the face of the church as we know it for the better! Come on!
The Right Reverend Dr Christopher Cocksworth, Bishop of Coventry, says:
The Church of England’s vision for education is that children and young people will have ‘life in all its fulness’. ALIVE 2023 gave thousands of children a chance to sing and dance, listen, laugh and learn, to be loud and to be silent, and discover the fulness of life that comes from being world changers – people who have caught the vision of the sort of world of peace, kindness and justice that Jesus saw, and who decide to work with God for a better world for all.
Chip Kendall, Soul Children UK, Songwriter and Performer says:
All of us in the Orbitron Crew had an absolute blast at ALIVE 2023! We felt as though we were taking part in a truly historic moment and we can’t wait for the next ALIVE event! There was such a sense of oneness and unity – the synergy was palpable!
Gavin Kibble, Operations Director for Feed the Hungry says:
Alive 2023 was a very special moment to see thousands of young children all worshipping God in one place.
Miz Porter, Director of iSingPOP, says:
It was so amazing to see 9,000 children singing their hearts out. A moment of heaven touching earth!