Christians in Ilkley have been sharing the message of love on the streets of Ilkley by creating and giving out Valentine’s Day chocolates to members of the public.
Members of The Sanctuary, a centre for prayer in the middle of town, teamed up with around 20 volunteers from six local churches to make 400 Valentine’s Day gift bags which were then given out to passers-by on February 14th.
The gift bags included a badge with the word ‘Loved’, home-made, heart shaped, chocolates and a message: “This badge and these Fairtrade chocolates have been made for you by Christians from different local churches in celebration of God’s love for all of us through Jesus today – and every day – and also because 14th February is out birthday. You are loved – the Sanctuary.”
Bishop Toby dropped in to see preparations as part of his Ilkley week – and to give the team encouragement (You can see his visit on his video diary of the visit here)
Liz Baddaley, one of the team, said, “We had hardly any refusals to the 400 gift bags we were able to give out; lots of amazing responses, good, joy-filled conversations with people; and a few really fantastic responses online - including someone tweeting their chocolates and tags to Ilkley and Ilkley chat with a thank you to us and a couple of secular businesses and organisations telling others about what we’d been doing with the gifts and the thank you messages and how blessed they’d been by it all.
“Lots of people are still wearing their badges and talking about the message and many people are continuing to look at the window art… it’s great to see people just stand there and read out loud to each other ‘You are LOVED!’”.