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Nearly 1000 people in our diocese have indicated that they are involved in working with children and young people in our parishes and we are seeking to develop more support and resources for this growing and vital ministry.

General Synod recently included in their recommendations that:

  • Parishes and deaneries should be encouraged to employ children’s and youth workers. 
  • Deaneries should be encouraged to develop mission action plans for work with children and young people.
  • The Diocese should to prioritise evangelism and witness with younger people.
  • Our Growing Younger Task Group provides a forum to consider the implications of these recommendations alongside the areas identified in Growing in God report.

In May 2017 the Diocese employed a Youth and Young Adults Officer, Phil Bailie.

Urie Bronfenbrenner says “Every child needs at least one adult who is irrationally crazy about him or her”.

There is a lack of adults who do this for young people today and we as Church have a fantastic opportunity to fill this void.

We have a round 50,000 young people in our Diocese and only just over 1% of those in our CofE churches so there is a lot of work to be done.

The encouragement however is that we have people out there who are passionate about helping young people grow and being a full part of the life of the Church. We also have some brilliant youth workers/ministers in our diocese.  Please contact me if you’d like to find one near you or get some advice and inspiration for your youth work.

Remember… "Young people are like salt. When they're included, they make everything taste better." says Phil Bailie.




Gather is our annual celebration of both God and young people, bringing young people from across our region together to have loads of fun in an iconic building – St Edmundsbury Cathedral.

In 2017 over 150 young people enjoyed a Rodeo Bull, football, arts and crafts, BBQ and display from the Christian Motorcycle Association.  The event also included a concert by Bean Baker, the leading worship band.

One of the most important facets of Gather is that it’s a chance for 11 - 18 year olds to invite their friends, to have fun and strengthen faith.  Hopefully the confidence nurtured through events like Gather will mean young people return to their churches, schools and friendship groups with verve and enthusiasm!

It’s also proving more and more popular, with many more tickets sold for this year's event than last years. There has also been interest from further away, from different denominations and from churches across Suffolk who have not been involved previously.

On 29 September 2018 we will be hosting our third Gather - look out for updates throughout 2017.

We offer a range of training including:


Mission Academy Live

Mission Academy Live is series of 10 innovative video based sessions, each one empowering young people as missional disciples within a small group context. With a focus on peer to peer evangelism, each session will provide an understanding of today's contemporary context, with teaching, discussion, and testimony, all leading to a practical response. Through accountable relationships, this first of its kind evangelism and discipleship tool encourages young people to be intentional, authentic, united and obedient to the call and command of Christ to ‘Go, and make disciples’ (Matt 28:20).

The Church of England is a partner in designing this course but it really is for all.  The sessions will be run in a variety of different settings right across the country and in our Diocese we have partners in CYM Ipswich, Boost, Bury Christian Youth, Youth For Christ and a good number of individual churches who will be running hubs and sessions throughout 2018. This is a very exciting prospect for our Diocese.

If you would like more information please contact Phil.Bailie@cofesuffolk.org

Equip: Level 3 Youth Qualification


Starting in September 2018 in partnership with The Institute for Children Youth and Mission we will be delivering a Level 3 qualification in youth work.

If you are a volunteer youth leader, doing a gap year in youth ministry or part-time Youth worker and want to develop your skills in Youth Work, or gain confidence in the work you are doing, then this course is for you.  

This is a one-year course in Youth Ministry offering a Level 3 qualification, the Certificate is accredited by NOCN for Youth Support Worker status. It can be completed by youth workers of any age from 18+.  The training days and whole experience would fit well within a gap year programme. 

Award units cover theory of youth work, safeguarding, young people’s development and communicating and engaging with young people, challenging behaviour, faith and community values and reflective practice. In addition learners must plan, deliver and evaluate a 6 session programme with young people.

If you would like more information and details on the cost of the programme please contact equip@cofesuffolk.org

Youth Residential 

Deviate is an action-packed weekend residential for young people aged 11-18 years old.  Featuring air rifle shooting, raft building, bushcraft, Tribes, and a variety of inspiring Christian speakers. 

This is an ideal event for youth leaders to come along and bring their youth groups with them. All attendees should be coming with others from the same group and accompanied by a youth leader.

Deviate is held in Skreens Park Activity Centre, near Chelmsford.  This centre offers young people the opportunity to challenge and empower themselves to do something different.  With its range of modern, fully equipped buildings and established camping areas Skreens Park Activity Centre is well prepared for creating adventures.

See our Facebook page and website.  For booking information please visit Eventbrite

  • Regular activities-+

    Activities across the Diocese:


    “Vision” 7:00pm on the second Sunday of each month, for young people across a number of churches.

    Cell groups for discipleship on Sunday mornings

    “Rock Solid” Youth Club. 

    Visit to Soul Survivor

    Southgate Church, Bury St Edmunds

    Thursday night youth club

    Once a month Tuesday night youth club,

    Monday evening Christian youth group

    All Saints Church, Kesgrave

    Junior and senior youth clubs, part of Kesgrave Youth Forum

    Wednesday house group for 6th Form students, Schools work

    Friday afterschool club

    Morning youth service every 2nd Sunday of each month

    Visit to Soul Survivor.

    St Andrews, Rushmere

    StAR Club 6.30-8.00pm in the church hall​, attached to St Andrews Church, the street, in old Rushmere village.

    St Matthews, Ipswich

    A morning youth service

    Sunday evening youth club

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CofE Connect Youth Club (Thirst)