Great story from AlJazeera on what I would call New Evangelization:
"London, United Kingdom - With her blue jacket and
baseball cap - and armed with a prayer as well as a walkie-talkie -
Audrey Golding is on her first patrol with London's growing army of
"Street Pastors" carrying out what she sees as God's mission on
Britain's boozy byways.
She is one of at least 11,000 volunteers
in the Christian organisation who patrol towns and cities across the
country at weekends to bring practical help - and, at times, a spiritual
message - to young people out partying late at night."
"The Pastors patrol in pairs talking to revellers, maintaining contacts
with bar staff, and helping drunken or troubled youths. At 85, their
oldest member, Pat Fletcher, says she has never felt vulnerable in her
five years patrolling.
They hand out lollipops, sandals for young
women who have removed their high-heeled shoes, and "spikies" - small,
plastic devices that allow people to prevent bottled drinks being
“spiked” maliciously with spirits.
As a religiously motivated
group, at times the Street Pastors will even openly pray in the street
with or for a troubled youth when appropriate."
""I am convinced that we avert some of the crime and violence," said
Tomlinson, who has been patrolling for seven years. "The most important
thing we can do is to maintain a presence, to be out there - and that
makes a real difference."
Other locals agree. Police officers on duty and club door staff speak in glowing terms of the Street Pastors' work.
"These guys are amazing: you have people sitting around blind-drunk
and they will always come and talk to them and encourage them to go
home," said Lawrence Dickson, the burly head doorman of Sutton's
The work of the Street Pastors highlights a
strong emphasis on collaboration employed by local authorities such as
the police through the so-called "Safer Sutton Partnership". In what is
sometimes referred to as "joined-up" policing, officers consult
regularly with the Pastors, bar owners and security guards - and respond
rapidly to de-escalate signs of trouble.