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John Young and Simon Stanley

York Courses is based in historic York and we produce courses specially designed for groups of Christians from different traditions to study together.

Our courses are used in more than 20 countries, all over the world, helping people to share their experiences and understanding of the Christian faith. Although the most popular times to use our courses are Lent and Advent, they are not 'season-specific' and so can be used at any time of year.

Beginnings
York Courses was started in 1996 by John Young (then York Diocesan Missioner and an established author) and Simon Stanley (then BBC radio producer/presenter and a vicar in York). Although John and Simon are both ministers in the Church of England, they're from different traditions within it. We were particularly pleased when Dr David Hope, who was Archbishop of York from 1995 until 2005, declared that ''these courses are some of the best things that the Church of England has produced''. We always liked him!

As a result of their work they had met and recorded many eminent Christians. It occurred to them that the interesting audio material of these celebrities, together with a course booklet, could be made available for local churches and discussion groups.

Take off!
There was an encouraging take-up locally, particularly among those interested in ecumenical co-operation - always a priority for John and Simon. So they made this unique combination of audio material, together with printed background notes and questions, available the next year and then the next, each time with a different subject and focus, but always with as wide an approach as possible.

We believe that sharing differences as well as things in common is good. So our courses work in a different way from most other Christian study resources, which is probably why The Church Times said ''the format works brilliantly''.

Help for Group Leaders
As well as being ecumenical in our sympathies, we also think studying should be easy to get into. So as well as a study booklet with masses of information and questions about the subject in hand, we also produce a CD (audio tapes are also still available for most of our courses) with discussion starters featuring contributors well known for their expertise - or sometimes just well known!

You may be surprised at how wide a pool we fish in for the people we believe can help us: have a look on the Contributors page.

And York Courses grew and grew, serving an ever wider audience of Christian seekers around the world.

Our Team
York Courses is still quite a small operation, though with just a few more people involved than in those early days, when we made all the recorded and printed stuff ourselves around a vicarage dining table.

And we now have an office (there's posh!) with :

  • Elaine (Simon's wife) Elaine Stanleyand Pauline, whom you are likely to talk to on the phone, should you ring;
  • occasional packers, Jackie and Lucy, who help to get out your orders in our particularly busy time, November to April.
  • And that's us. You can contact us in any way you like - phone, letter, email and of course you can also order online.

    information@yorkcourses.co.uk

    Telephone : 01904 466516

    Post : York Courses, PO Box 343, York YO19 5YB UK