Hundreds of young Christians gather at Breathe Deep

30th January 2018

On Saturday, 27 January, 300 young people from churches all over South Yorkshire and East Riding came together at one of the largest Christian youth events in the region.
Now in its fifth year, the day encourages young people to breathe deep, to think, to have fun and to discover God together. The theme this year was DIFFERENTLY, THE SAME. 
Traditionally, the diocesan bishop for the Sheffield Diocese attends to address the event and answer questions. This year, it was Bishop Pete’s first Breathe Deep event in his role as Bishop of Sheffield.  He spoke to those gathered, sharing what it means for him to live differently, and yet share a common humanity with everyone else.
Bishop Pete said:
“I am really proud to be a bishop of a diocese that can gather so many of our young people together in one place at one time.” Speaking on the theme of difference he said "We may have differences but they shouldn’t divide us. Every single one of you is made in the image of God, every one unique but equally made in the image of God".
The young people, aged 11-18 didn’t go easy on him in the Q&A, asking him questions such as: What encouraged you to become the Bishop of Sheffield?; Does God respect those who believe in other religions?; and, What do you prefer KFC or McDonalds!?
Held at St Thomas Church, Philadelphia, there was six workshops based around the theme – looking at how we are different, how we are the same, how do we live with people of different faith, politics and even different churchmanship.
The day also hosted loads of activities with games, inflatables, games consoles, prizes, video challenges and even Subway for lunch!
Mike North, Children and Young People’s Adviser for the diocese said:
“Our fifth Breathe Deep day thankfully again seemed to live up to the expectations that those attending each year have!  It is a great place for the young people of the church to gather, worship, think, learn and enjoy the inflatables and activities we have lined up, all in the name of Jesus!  I’m particularly delighted to welcome Bishop Pete Wilcox to his first Breathe Deep event.”
The Diocese of Sheffield has made it a major part of its working strategy to see young people as integral to the future shape of the church.  In 2015, it launched The Centenary Project – aimed at training and placing youth workers within parishes to work with children, young people and families.  In December 2017, it also announced it had been successful in obtaining funding of £1.8 million to expand this project further.


  1. Videos from the day, including Bishop Pete's Q&A can be found on the Diocesan YouTube channel.
  2. To find out more and for a selection of photographs, visit
  3. The Centenary Project seeks to equip the local church to effectively engage, grow and disciple a new generation of young people, children and families.  More information can be found on

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