Sam Griffiths, Pastor of Wellington Baptist Church, Somerset, has been involved in leading and overseeing Alpha for over 15 years both as a pastor and as an Alpha Regional Advisor:
Increasingly, new Christians are carrying huge amounts of spiritual baggage, hurts and strongholds. Traditional discipleship material focussing on growth, gifts and giving was not getting through. We still need those crucial foundation studies, of course, but it seems almost impossible for them to find good soil if people do not first deal with deeper issues. In the past year we have used the Freedom In Christ Discipleship Course after Alpha and in our evening service. We have seen folk suddenly being propelled forwards at a rate unseen before. This is no weird “see a demon everywhere” course but a very balanced, biblically-based, well-presented course that God is powerfully using. I would not hesitate to recommend it as an immediate follow-on course to Alpha.
We would highly recommend this course, especially for new Christians. The comments most often received from individuals are: "I wish I had known this when I first became a Christian"; "The teaching is so easy to understand"; "No one has ever explained things this way before.”
Sandra Stark Whitlawburn & Springhall Community Church, Glasgow
One long-standing member said that he had experienced several courses that helped people to become Christians, but this was the first that helped him to be a Christian.
Paul Day, St Luke’s, Eccleston, Merseyside
This has been an excellent resource in our inner city Anglican church where many Christians, young and old, come with heavy loads of emotional baggage. Watching people being set free by the Holy Spirit has been immensely rewarding.
Revd. Arani, Senior Vicar, Emmanuel Church, Southall
It has been a joy to watch the amazing transformation in people's lives week by week. We have seen more transformations in three years of running the course than in many years previously. It is an excellent follow-on to Alpha.
Jenny Walker, Head of Discipleship, Tankerton Evangelical Church, Whitstable
The FIC course has given us a framework that has allowed people to examine their history and lifestyle without fear and humiliation and provide a way for them to walk from the shadows into the certainty of their new life in Christ.
Graham Marsh, Kings Church Eastbourne (New Frontiers)
It has been a great blessing to find a course that combines spiritual development with a powerful healing dynamic and that is equally suited for use in contexts that range from an area of high social deprivation to the more affluent estates.
Canon Steve S Morgan, Christ Church, Merthyr Tydfil,
Steve Moses is one of the leaders of Kings Church, Loughborough:
“At the end of the Alpha course, we invited those who had expressed a faith in Christ onto the FIC course along with other members. One Christian who went through the FIC course said it was the best course he had been on in twenty years of being a Christian – high praise! Someone else came on the course after a failed suicide attempt. She had found Christ previously through an Alpha Course and was on medication for depression but made it clear at the outset that the abuse she had suffered previously made it virtually impossible for her to forgive the abusers. Prior counselling, both Christian and non-Christian had allowed her the slack to retain her unforgiveness. During the course she was able to forgive those who had wronged her for the variety of consequences she had suffered. It was a very moving experience.”
A very liberating course that deals with life’s issues in a very practical and sensitive matter. Our church has been greatly blessed.
Billy Fenning, Senior Leader, St Saviour's Elim Church, Reading
I have seen people’s understanding revolutionised, their whole approach to the Christian journey transformed.
Phil Cole, Leader, Bransgore Community Church
The benefits of the FIC Course go beyond the course guests – those they know and meet are affected too. One guest had never told her work colleagues that she was a follower of Christ. After completing the course she shared her story with them and brought many of them to Alpha!
Ben & Beccy Oliver, Kerith Community Church, Bracknell
The course has had a dramatic effect on the life of the church. There is a huge new wave of love, compassion and encouragement amongst us. Some tired old mind-sets have been released and renewed and there have been huge leaps in understanding in those who were open to taking God at His word and running with it. There is a VIBRANT buzz of expectation of Jesus' healing and restoration. I am so excited about what Jesus has done through the course.
Liz Smith, All Saints Church, Burbage.
The FIC Discipleship Course has made a big difference to our church. It is now a significant part of our nurturing of new Christians and we try and build the Discipleship Course into small group life as much as we can. One of the strengths of FIC materials is that they are based on the fundamental fact that most Christian’s behavioral problems are at root belief problems. As the truth is brought to individuals and they believe it, they become free.
John Groves, Senior Pastor, Winchester Family Church
We consider the FIC course to be the best material on the market to build Christians up in their walk with Jesus. It encourages personal responsibility and helps people to go deeper with God and discover His blessings. The impact on our church and community has been enormous.
Adrian Pike, Beacon Church, Camberley
Mairi Lucas runs the FIC Discipleship Course at Viewforth Church of Scotland in Midlothian:
“We had tried other follow on courses to Alpha in previous years but none generated the interest which FIC did. We ran it using the same format as Alpha – meal, talk and discussion. The FIC course puts the teaching in the right order – we learn first about God’s love for us and who we are in Christ. Only then can we live the life He wants. It is the clearest teaching I have come across for those who have done Alpha but haven’t grasped the difference between a Christian and a non-Christian and it will help any Christian connect with God’s truth, power and love.”
Around 2,000 of our members have gone through the FIC course and God touched them. There has been significant growth and many hurt and forgiveness issues were dealt with.
Dawie van Vuuren, South African Church, London
The FIC course is among the best I have ever come across. It is solid biblical truth that brings freedom to those who are captive, those of us who have known Jesus for years, or those who have just come to know Jesus personally in recent weeks or months. I would recommend every church leader to do it personally and take as many of their congregation through as they can.
Adrian Lowe, Amblecote Christian Centre, Stourbridge
People were released and freed up by the process of having worldviews challenged and replacing lies with the truth.
Mark Jones, Co-leader of Agape Community Church Ty-Sign, Near Newport , S. Wales
It has been fantastic to see people grab hold of the truth of who they are in Christ in a fresh way and this course has been a great tool to enable that to happen.
Jim Partridge, Pastor, The King's Church, Mid-Sussex
Like Alpha, the material is not new but is good old-fashioned Christianity. What Neil Anderson and Steve Goss have done is to package it in a very accessible and useable way. With a little training and forethought, anyone in the church can pick up the material and use it. The support and encouragement from the FIC team is outstanding.
Nick Cooper, Pastor, Frome Baptist Church
Every time I run this course, God speaks to me and shows me how I can become more like Jesus.
Geoff Thompson, Pastor, Kingsway Chapel, Chester
It has helped to clarify the gospel; it has challenged and explained things to all of us - "even" those leading the group
Holly Craigs, Hexham Community Church, Northumberland
The Freedom in Christ course has radically changed people's lives. The spiritual hang-ups of who they were have gone, which in turn has affected how they have reached out to others. Jesus becomes real and they are eager to share what the He can do. The course can certainly set your church on fire!
Jackie Leswell (Major), The Salvation Army, Parkstone
We have now used this material in a variety of ways: one-to one; with small groups of two or three people; in cell groups, as well as with larger groups in the church. In all these situations it has proved a great asset in the Church's task of making effective disciples.
Richard & Anna Wilson, Kings Church, Hastings.
The simple yet profound message of the FIC course has proved to be a turning point in many people’s lives.
Melanie Smith, Christian Life Centre, Selly Oak, Birmingham
The FIC course is a gentle but powerful method of helping people know the truth and that truth sets them free.
Bob & Angela Earl, Lighthouse Church, Spalding
The FIC course makes a real difference. One lady in particular found that many hurts were healed when she forgave her ex-husband for abuse she had suffered. She found release from her guilt and a new freedom from depression.
David Priddy, Pastor, Ashford Common Baptist Church
This is a unique course because it provides the opportunity to know what it means to be a child of God; to know the truth that sets free; to get radically right with God and to remove the things that hinder our enjoyment of Father God; and to move on to maturity.
Joyce Nimmo, New life Church, Paisley
It was almost as if the church had been asleep and suddenly woke up! One man in his 70s came to support the leaders, not imagining after a life of active Christian service that he "needed to", but God met with him in such a powerful way that his thinking and understanding were radically changed. The course empowers Christians to take charge of their own lives. It is quiet, straightforward and thoroughly biblical. I can't recommend it too highly.
Jean Mintoft, Tywyn Baptist Church
Our people have been encouraged and motivated to move up a gear. Many shared that they feel somehow ‘different` and are experiencing a deeper sense of inward freedom. It has brought unity into our Church like never before.
Elizabeth Byrne, Hacketstown Christian Centre, Co Carlow, Ireland
Having seen over seventy people complete the course, I am a committed enthusiast. It is a great way to help people deepen discipleship. It gives them tools for change and has made a big difference in many people's lives
Ruth Humphreys, The Mission, Nelson, Lancashire
The whole church was encouraged to attend the course, and it built a good foundation of biblical principles for all our members, new and mature Christians. There were significant breakthroughs with noticeable change.
Bob House, Pastor, Rockwell Green Christian Fellowship, Wellington, Somerset
Richard Price is leader of a church plant in Pilar de la Horadada, Spain, an hour south of Alicante at the most southern edge of the Costa Blanca:
“We ran a successful Alpha Course to bring people into the church and followed it with the Freedom In Christ Discipleship Course for those who had completed Alpha and for those existing Christians who had started coming to the meetings. It was excellent. It presented the truths of the Christian faith in an understandable way, provided the opportunity for people to apply the truths to their own lives under the prompting of the Holy Spirit, and laid the foundations for maintaining their freedom. Whatever stage someone is at in the Christian life, this course has something for them.”
We have seen a tremendous level of spiritual growth and liberty. Our youth are the majority in our FIC meeting. They come, they want to stay, we can't get them out of church after the service finishes because - Hallelujah! - in Christ they are free".
Sadie Lindsay-Brooks, Local Youth & Christian Education Director, Oldbury New Testament Church of God, Sandwell
The presentations are very clear with illustrations and humour that are much appreciated by participants.
Ron Craven Presbyterian Church Llanelli
We were stuck and we didn’t seem to be going anywhere. The course helped us to focus on the problems, untangle the issues and shine a light on the truth. It gave us a structure to work with, which set us free to go forward. The difference was incredible.
Betty Barnes, The Haven Church, Pembroke.
It is really wonderful to see the change in people's lives. We would recommend this course to anyone.
Paul Martin, Lutterworth Community Church
I had been troubled for some time about people who might come to faith through Alpha or other outreach but who carry a lot of "baggage" - how could we help them grow, being a fairly small church with few people-resources? Having found FIC, I now feel that we will be able to help people have their lives renewed and straightened out to live fruitful Christian lives.
Helen Bookless, St Gwladys' Church, Bargoed, South Wales
The FIC Discipleship course has provided us with solid foundations to deal with the practical challenges of walking with Jesus day by day. One of the best things is the support material. There are many structured prayers and affirmations, full of balanced, biblical truth that can be used to reinforce the teaching
Joel Jardine, City Temple, London
The simple plain truth of God’s word has been liberating for our church for which we say thanks to God and Freedom In Christ Ministries.
Kevin Parker, Pastor, Oakwood Church
Carolyn Cardwell runs the FIC course in Kings Church, Kingston:
“Everyone loved the course and we had almost 100% attendance. People said things like “the penny really dropped tonight” and “I can really relate to that”. They felt it was very clear and answered a lot of the queries they had after Alpha. One lady commented that without it she would have probably drifted away again straight from Alpha. Three members of the group have now been baptised, and a husband and wife who went through both Alpha and the FIC course have moved quickly to become core members of the church. The course consists of clearly and logically presented foundational teaching. It really seems to hit the spot with where people are at after Alpha. We felt so amazed just watching the Holy Spirit move in the group and bring understanding and revelation – it was really brilliant!”
Freedom in Christ is a well-produced course that is designed to provide an encounter with the truths that are found in scripture, and through it, many people’s lives have been transformed. This has been true for all sorts of people, from those with the most horrendous past, to those who have been ‘jogging along quite nicely, thank you!’
Graham Fry, St Julian’s Methodist Church, Newport, South Wales
As an expatriate church, people arrive from many different backgrounds, and
are often only here for a short time. The FIC Discipleship course is a most useful resource to help make their time with us significant, by giving both an opportunity to review where they are at with the Lord, and a resource to take with them wherever they go next.
Derek Frank, Evangelical Baptist Church of Geneva
I would recommend the Freedom in Christ Discipleship Course to any church because the teaching is so clear and helpful. The result, for both individual Christians and a church, is that many lives are radically changed, and issues, which have often been sitting around for years, are dealt with.
Brian Nicholson, Vicar, St. Leonard’s, Oakley
This is a great course as an immediate 'follow on' from "Alpha". It is particularly important as many of our new Christians have little or no Biblical background.
Andrew Whitman, Pastor for Evangelism & Discipleship, Bournemouth Community Church