A NEW church group aims to spread community spirit, as well as the Gospel, among young people.

Oswestry Rural Youth Church (ORYC), which welcomes 11 to 18-year-olds of all faiths and none, has held its first official events in the area this year.

Youth minister Matt Barkley has been working with ORYC for six months and has been focusing on introducing himself to churches in the deanery and building relationships with churches, young people and local youth workers.

ORYC is a self-funded project relying to a large extent on volunteers to work with Matt.

Fundraising has secured an initial three years, but the group welcomes volunteers and further donations. The first official ORYC event was held at The Venue in January with a follow-up event in February – and the church set to host small ‘Ichthus Youth’, as well as bigger youth gatherings under the ‘Unseen’ banner.

Ichthus Youth trial sessions have been held at Whittington Community Centre and will continue from 4-5.30pm on April 7, with the hope that it will continue after the Easter holiday.

Young people aged 10 ½ and older can enjoy games, snacks, and discussions on Christianity.

Ichthus Youth sessions in St Martins will start in the summer term, and a united youth gathering with other churches across Oswestry, called Unseen, will take place from 4-6pm on Saturday, May 11 at the Quinta Centre, Weston Rhyn, and is £3 per youngster.

For more information, or to book a place, contact Matt Barkley on minister@oryc.org.uk.