Thames North Celebrates 80 Years of Pilots!


Earlier this year, Pilots from around Thames North Synod gathered at The Vine Church in Ilford to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the organisation.

Pilots, the children’s and youth organisation of the URC, was originally founded to thank children for their efforts in raising money for the London Missionary Society (LMS) to build ships in the name of famous missionary John Williams. Today, Pilots companies across England, Scotland and Wales continue to meet the needs of the communities in which they function, offering children and young people safe and caring environments to flourish in the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ. You can find out more about Pilots here.

Everyone enjoyed a great day of games, activities and stories wrapped up in worship that encompassed the ethos of inclusion and love which Pilots has promoted throughout its history.

Every Pilot had the opportunity to spend the morning engaging with activities, including music, dance, thinking, discussing, crafting, drawing…

In the afternoon, everyone came together to look at the story of Abraham, wondering how they might re-tell this important story which reminds us that, whoever we are, we have something important to do for God, including the nurturing of new generations, which Abraham, despite his age, certainly did! Pilots used art, drama, creative writing and even breaking news reports to help share the story in fresh and engaging ways.

One of the greatest things about this gathering, for all attending, is that The Vine URC hosts a multi-faith Pilots company, welcoming children and young people from a whole host of different religious, cultural, racial and national backgrounds. This encouraged everyone to think about what it really means to love your neighbour and to stand together, as one people, united in a spirit of peace and understanding, something which Pilots has long called for.

Another encouraging part of the day, celebrating 80 years of Pilots, is that there were, appropriately, about 80 people there!

See you in another 80 years?