St Barnabas Church

Alpha in St Barnabas Church, Swanland

Alpha @ St Barnabas Church, Swanland

The Alpha Course, an opportunity to explore the meaning of life.

Alpha - Why!

The Alpha course is a key outreach tool, which has introduced many of our current church members to a living active Christian faith.

Alpha is for?

Anyone interested in finding out more about the Christian faith. People of all ages are welcome.

Learning and laughter. It is possible to learn about the Christian faith and have fun at the same time.

Pasta and Pudding. Eating a meal together gives people an opportunity to get to know each other.

Helping one another. The small groups give you a chance to discuss issues raised in the talks.

Ask anything. Alpha is a place where no question is regarded as too simple or too hostile.


A typical evening in Alpha

At St Barnabas we hold a centrally run evening course during the Autumn, and during the rest of the year we hold daytime and evening courses run in peoples homes.

7.15pm Supper - guests usually eat with their own group of around twelve people.


8pm Talk - beginning with a short song or hymn. The main talk of the evening addresses a key issue relating to the Christian faith. In the centrally run course the talks are given by local speakers, whereas in the home run courses a series of video presentations by speaker Nicky Gumbel is used.

Titles of Talks

  • Christianity: Boring, Untrue and Irrelevant? Given at our Alpha Suppers - Christmas and September.
  • Who is Jesus?
  • Why did Jesus Die?
  • How can I be sure of my faith?
  • Why and how should I read the Bible?
  • Why and how should I pray?
  • How does God guide us?
  • Who is the Holy Sprit?
  • What does The Holy Spirit do?
  • How can I be filled with the Holy Spirit?
  • How can I make the most of the rest of my life?
  • How can I resist evil?
  • Why and how should I tell others?
  • What about the Church?

8.40pm Coffee - Time to chat and get to know your fellow Alpha members


9pm Small Groups - Many guests find this part of the course the most valuable and rewarding times of the whole Alpha course. The sessions are an opportunity to ask questions, express opinions and to discuss the topic of the evening in a non- threatening environment.


9.45pm End- the courses always end at a specific time - although guests are free to stay and chat - or retire to someone’s home or the pub!

When is the next course starting

The next Alpha course at St Barnabas Church, Swanland is starting in small groups for ten weeks soon.

For contact information about Alpha, click here.

Alpha - Who should go?

Alpha is for everyone!



  • People interested in investigating Christianity
  • Newcomers to the church
  • New Christians
  • Couples preparing for marriage
  • Those who want to brush-up on the basics.
  • People come from many different backgrounds, holding many different viewpoints-but all come with the same objective: to establish whether Jesus Christ has any real relevance for their lives.

Alpha - What will it cost, and when does it start?

Alpha is free, guests may be invited to make a voluntary contribution towards the cost of the food and the cost of the weekend away.

What they say about Alpha

"I believe the Alpha course has been one of the greatest initiatives in recent times to introduce people to Christianity in an easy-to-understand, down-to-earth and informal way."
Rosemary Conley
Fitness Club Pioneer


"I cannot think of any other course that covers the introduction to the core beliefs of the Christian faith in such an accessible way and is relevant for today."
David Suchet


"Alpha is perfect for anyone with an inquiring mind and huge heart. Try it now – I guarantee it will have a massive impact on your life!"
Diana Louise Jordan
Television Presenter


Alpha - What the press say?

“Alpha makes Christianity relevant to modern life.”
Julia Llewellyn Smith.
The Express

“It is clear that Alpha is already changing British church life.”
The Economist

More than five million people all over the world have completed the Alpha course during the last six years in churches, homes, schools, universities and prisons.

It is low-key, friendly and fun

Why not take this opportunity to explore the meaning of life.

What they say about Alpha

"I went along to Alpha and I was so shocked. I thought Christians were really sad, boring people but I couldn’t believe it – everyone was so happy. They all welcomed me and were interested in me."
Michelle Flanagan,
Single mother


"After a couple of weeks I relaxed and started enjoying Nicky’s talks and relating to them greatly. I was very pleased with the group I was in too. Now I keep an Alpha pamphlet in the cab and sometimes I say to passengers, ‘Go along and try it. It doesn’t cost you anything. It is like ten evenings out at the theatre.’"

Bernie Keane,
Taxi Driver

Contacting the Office

For contact information about Alpha, click here.

Send All Your Comments, Questions, and Suggestions about Alpha to Bev Gray, Alpha Administrator at St Barnabas Church, Swanland.

Office posted the article on Wednesday, 26th May 2004 at 10:29am
Article updated on tuesday, 23rd december 2014 at 3:54am