To celebrate its 10th year anniversary in the United Kingdom, SFC - UK gathered altogether for the European Launch of the Christ Pursuit conference. The venue could not have been more appropriate as Buckden Towers used to be a real life medieval castle and was a fitting symbol for the SFC Knights and Princesses coming together in God’s kingdom.
The conference was held for three days (November 6 – 8) and was attended by 30 participants. The Friday evening start was a fun filled but relevant fellowship & teambuilding night that allowed the participants to relax, unwind and empty themselves of their anxieties and worries in order to get ready to be filled with what the Lord had in store for them for the weekend.
The first conference session led by Sis. Cech Escano started on Saturday morning. This session kicked off the conference on a high note by connecting the conference with the previous SFC conferences such as SFC@Home, Knight’s Tale, Princess Diaries & Christ is the ICON as milestones in our SFC journey. She pointed out that these events were part of the means by which Christ continues to pursue us and are likewise means to affirm us in our own pursuit of Him. The session also included a heartfelt sharing by Sis. Angie Escolano.
Immediately following a sumptuous lunch, the conference again went into full swing with Session 2, this time led by the resident priest Fr. Chris Newman. This particular talk emphasizes the ways to ensure that Christ becomes a critical companion in our journey. It talks about five easy to remember items simply known as the 5Ds namely, Deepening Prayer, Delighting in the Sacraments, Developing Christ Consciousness, Distancing Yourself from Sin & Drawing Others to Christ. In order to reinforce the content of this session, participants were provided the opportunity to avail of the sacrament of reconciliation. After confession, Fr. Chris led a unique and intimate celebration of the sacrament of the Eucharist in Buckden Towers’ beautiful little chapel.
Before going into the third and final session for the day, the participants and the service team celebrated the traditional Lord’s Day led by no less than CFC – UK Country Heads, Bro. Chris & Sis Chipo Mautsi. The Lord’s Day ceremony was soon followed by a nourishing supper prepared by the energetic CFC service team.
Capping an already spirit-filled Saturday was the third session aptly titled ‘Empty Pursuits’ which was led by Bro. Bong Nidea. The evening session talked about the double edged blessings of satisfaction, security, success and service as ultimately becoming derailers in our pursuit of Christ when these become the focus that drive us forward. The session was concluded with a simple but powerful summary: SUCCEED first and foremost in ONE THING: FAITHFULLNESS; SATISFY our longings only with His infinite love; SECURE an intimate relationship with Him above all things and SERVE only because of love, and nothing else. This fitting conclusion to the session was a great segue to an inspiring praisefest led by Bro. Jerry Rivera. This highly anticipated segment of any conference was extra special as this showcased the Ablaze theme, which is the European battlecry in response to the SFC vision. This was truly instrumental in ensuring that the evening ended in a truly high note!
The third and final day of the conference began with another spirit filled celebration of the Holy Eucharist led by Fr. Chris. After a delicious breakfast, the conference got underway with its fourth and final session entitled ‘The Prize of the Pursuit’ led by Bro. Rob Escano. In this last talk, the hope of heaven and the eternal life in Christ was driven home to the participants. The talk likewise spoke about the SFCs role in building heaven on earth thru its vision of Every Single Man & Woman All Over the World Experiencing Christ. The session was further blessed with the touching sharings of Bro. Dennis Dimaculangan, Sis. Rhoda Rosal & Bro. Mon Simon. The session and the conference was concluded with a passionate worship where the participants and the service team collectively declared to one and all that they will indeed go to wherever place the Lord has prepared.