Over this next fortnight my home church has a UCCF summer team serving with us.
The team is made up of students from various CUs across the North East of England. The aim (I think!) is to give them a taste of ministry in a non-middle class, non-student setting.
I think this is a great initiative from UCCF. The church in the UK is very middle class. It's great that we are making in roads with the gospel to this section of society. However, unless we actively step out of this, then though we may still keep reaching more middle class people (which is great!), we run risk of forgetting the vast swathes of society that don't fit into this mould.
The trend for university leavers is generally to find a church that is one of the big, well known evangelical churches. These too are nearly always middle class. To get to these, many will pass one or more small churches that are faithfully trying to reach out with the gospel in the community they're in.
However, there are regions of the UK (I think particularly of the North East, but there are others) that even have whole towns that don't have a gospel witness, or else contain a small, struggling church. So I think it's great move from UCCF to try to show students a church that is trying to reach out into working class areas.
I hope these two weeks will open their eyes a bit to show at least these 11 students that there is a huge cross-cultural mission field on their doorstep that they can get involved in. I hope it may give them a passion for the lost and a desire, upon leaving university, to seek out a church that's looking to reach out to the 'urban poor'. Wouldn't it be great if more people caught this vision!