100,000 kids later, Bill still drives the bus
Pastor Bill's still the bus driver for his New York Sunday School that reaches almost 100,000 inner city children ...
Pastor Bill Wilson, keynote speaker at CRE International next week (19-22 May, ExCeL), runs a Sunday School that reaches nearly 100,000 inner city children every week – and still drives the bus in New York to pick some of them up.
"Pastors don't drive buses to pick up poor kids," said Wilson, founder of Metro World Child. "They think they're too good for it. They think they've graduated. They think they're hotshots. So why do I do it? Because every week, when I drive the bus, you know who I'm picking up? Myself."
The young Wilson was walking down the street with his mother when she instructed him to sit and wait for her to return. He sat and waited – for three days. She never came back. A Christian man who had seen Bill alone, stopped and offered him help.
Metro World Child is dedicated to serving boys and girls growing up in the roughest circumstances and environments, ministering to them through weekly Sunday School services, child sponsorships, special programmes and personal home visits – on a weekly basis.
In inner city New York, as well as in countries across the globe, the organisation presents a message that transforms young people on the inside, "so that they will be able to resist the obstacles that try to destroy them daily," explained Wilson. "The concepts developed by Metro are duplicated all over the world because they are based upon biblical principles that transcend cultures, denominations, race and generations.
"We believe that a true life change can only happen through knowing Jesus. While reaching out and meeting physical needs is important, ultimately the redemptive power of Jesus is what breaks destructive cycles and changes lives.
"For children living in hopeless situations, hearing about the love of Jesus gives them ultimate hope, joy and peace and provides a foundation that can’t be shaken."
Wilson will speak at CRE International on Youth Workers' Day (Thursday 21 May) and Children's Workers' Day (Friday 22 May).
More than 300 organisations are expected to exhibit at the four-day event, displaying everything from computers to communion wine, printers to puppets, stained glass to sound systems. More than 100 seminars will provide advice on subjects ranging from preaching to self-publishing, church websites to social exclusion.
"Our move the the heart of London has already opened up countless new options for exhibitors and visitors alike," said event director Bill Allen.
CRE International at ExCel, London opening hours: Tue 19 to Thur 21 May, 10am-5pm; Fri 22 May, 10am-4.30pm.