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Profile - From Atheism to Alpha

I used to be a hardcore atheist who thought religions were old fashioned nonsense and people who went to church were a bunch of idiots. Then, in 2002, a new lady came to work in our office – Sue Hall.

I became her admin lady and soon noticed that there was something different about her. She wasn’t just a really nice person - it went deeper than that. She never moaned or gossiped and treated everyone with respect. After quite a few weeks, Sue mentioned that she and her husband had moved to Ashford to start a new church. I didn’t know until that point that Sue was a Christian but I remember thinking, “Ah, she’s one of those real Christians – the ones who really believe it and put it into practice”.

But I still thought Christianity was nonsense, so when Sue asked me to go on an Alpha course, I said “No, thank you” (what an idiot I was!) Later on, Sue had the courage to ask me again. This time I agreed - convinced I wasn’t going to change my mind, but just because it would be nice to get to know her better.

A number of the things Sue and the other Christians told me about their faith sounded extraordinary. Adult baptism? Creation? Speaking in tongues? Surely only ignorant people believed this. But I couldn’t pooh-pooh these things, however bizarre, because Sue believed them and I knew her to be an educated, capable woman who was completely sincere.

It took a long time for it all to make sense but eventually I got baptised. How grateful I am that Sue cared enough to witness to me for so long, and was brave enough to invite me to Alpha twice. I don’t think I could have got saved any other way. Thank you, God!

- Christine Davis


What is Alpha? On Alpha, guests are invited to explore the Christian faith in a relaxed setting over ten weekly sessions with a weekend away.

Each week guests enjoy a meal and a talk on subjects as diverse as “Who is Jesus?”, “How Can I Have Faith?” and “How Can I Make the Most of the Rest of My Life?”  After the talk, guests break into small groups to discuss the content of the talk and share their own opinions.

The course is low-key, friendly and fun and is supported by all major denominations of the Christian church.

Alpha is a worldwide phenomenon –run in 169 countries and attended by over 22 million people. Alpha is free and open to everyone. No question is out of bounds, and participants are free to say as much or as little as they wish as they make up their own minds about the teachings of Jesus.

Speak to the church office to join the next course.

Gateway Church Ashford, is a church in Ashford, Kent, and is part of the New Frontiers movement and within the Catalyst Network sphere.


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