Posted by: Pamphilus ()
Date: November 23, 2006 11:52PM

This is perhaps a long shot but I would like some information about Holy Trinity Brompton (HTB) in London, UK. This is the largest and richest Anglican church and home of the Alpha Course. The staff comprises approximately 180 members and has numerous church plants in London. It is also the home of the European 'Toronto Blessing' experience which it still promotes. The leadership recently changed hands to Nicky Gumball.

I would like to hear from any ex-staff member who worked there in the past or recent past and who experienced or witnessed any controlling or monitoring taking place, intimidation, or anything unusual, particularly in the last 2 years.

I am not so much interested in hearing from congregational members, visitors, or those involved in the pastorates outside of the church building. It is specifically staff members. If you were a member of a pastorate held in the church and you've seen or heard anything unusual, and you left, please get in touch too.


Moderator: There aren't that many topics on this message board so rather than post your message in every one, as you have done, I've chosen one for you and deleted the others. If you'd prefer your message placed in a different one, go ahead and repost. EZ[/color:8d9c8436c1]

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Posted by: bb01234 ()
Date: January 08, 2007 02:44AM

For those out of the UK, Alpha group are a group that affiliate themselves with various churches ( I believe ) and offer to local people in those areas a chance to 'experience for themselves' the word of God.

No pressure of course, you understand, just a sequence of classes where you can develop your own beliefs about that which is presented.

Funnily enough (surprise, surprise) they don't rely on the texts that have been in use (rightly or wrongly) for a few thousand years but use their own words, no doubt to 'help understanding'.

But there are already thousands of books out there so why more?

They also have videos followed by discussion / explanation groups

I'm sure you can see where this is leading ...

They also have lots of posters on the tube, in stations and on public transport.

Here is a quote from a review:
[i:66f790b50d]What is the Alpha Course? The Alpha course is a world-wide phenomena within the Christian church, currently operating in over a hundred countries. The intention of the course is to teach the basics of the Christian faith to un-churched people in a series of ten meetings and a weekend using videos and books. The course originated in Holy Trinity Brompton Church London, a parish church of the Church of England, who produce the videos and books that resource the course. Although originating within a specific denomination it is used by churches of many denominations including a number within the Roman Catholic Church. Theologically it is evangelical and charismatic yet it is endorsed by church leaders who would not normally fit into these categories. Although aimed at unchurched people it also acts as a “refresher” course for existing Christians and is a significant vehicle for spreading charismatic renewal[/i:66f790b50d]

and here is the link the quote came from

This last quote is fascinating. Basically it ennunciates clearly how and why all LGAT (whether Alpha is or isn't is irrelevant here) have such a voracious appetite for new entrants

[i:66f790b50d]Prospects For the Alpha Course Enthusiasm cannot last indefinitely as people run out of non-church friends to invite, or they canonly take helping on so many Alpha courses before repetition and exhaustion make them change their commitments4. According to the model the numbers attending the Alpha course will peak at somepoint and start to decline. The course will not be maintained indefinitely and will burn out for a lackof enthusiasts. Thus Alpha would find it helpful to keep a record of the number of leaders and helpers on the courses, both nationally and locally, to look for their decline as an early sign of the courseburning itself out. Alternative ways of “[b:66f790b50d]re-infecting[/b:66f790b50d]” existing Alpha helpers to make them more effective could substantially improve its future prospects. This already happens for some peoplethrough attendance at Christian conventions such as New Wine, which have a similar theology and ethos to Alpha.

In order to sustain growth on the course either the revival growth threshold needs to be reduced - enthusiasts to have a higher reproduction potential - or the number of unbelievers that could bereached must be larger. Alpha is frequently the subject of billboard advertising, including buses and London underground. It has featured a number of times on TV and radio programs, including a broadcast of the talks and a documentary following those who attended a course. Nevertheless the main way it opens up pools of unbelievers is through its adoption by more churches and outsidebodies such as prisons, schools and universities.[/i:66f790b50d]

Perhaps we should give thanks to the Lord God Google for letting us recieve such wisdom!

HTH to clarify to anyone outside the UK



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Posted by: bb01234 ()
Date: January 08, 2007 02:47AM

I've just placed a quote on here. Reading through the document it refers to a site [www.church-growth-modelling.org.uk] . Whilst it is no doubt a 'decent' site, some of the downloads and articles on it read as how-tos for setting up LGAT's!

Download, read, understand, prepare.

The truth is out there!



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Posted by: kath ()
Date: January 13, 2007 02:27AM

Alpha began in the evangelical/charismatic element of the Anglican church [en.wikipedia.org]. It was certainly seen as an initiative of part of the Church of England when I was slightly involved in that movement in 1998.

The lady I knew who was a fan of Holy Trinity Brompton/Nick showed me the videos of the Alpha course (I think these were given to me by my Church of England vicar in the midlands of the UK so you can see how much it was endorsed by the Anglican church and part of it.)

The tapes included sections on (I think) speaking in tongues, discernment of demons and avoiding the occult. Standard 'Pentecostal' 'spirit-filled' christian stuff I would say.

This lady was also into the Toronto blessing and Kenneth Copeland if that helps people see what that faction of the church were keen on.

People did seem to idolise Nick and he was a very charismatic figure so I could see how that level of adulation could go to someone's head.

This faction were quite keen on trying to 'cast out demons' from people and this lady liked the novels of Frank Peretti [www.rapidnet.com] this site is a critique which might show some of the problems of this approach.

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