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Relay is our national discipleship and training year for graduates who love CUs.


Relay is our national discipleship and training year for graduates who love CUs.

Relay provides graduates with a unique opportunity to work alongside the Christian Union whilst learning loads and deepening their faith in Jesus.

Relay workers are supervised by a Christian Union Staff Worker through one– to–one bible studies and prayer, ministry direction and feedback. Relay workers are part of the wider Christian Union Ireland team that benefits from further training and fellowship together as they work with CUs in their area.


Over the course of the year, Relay workers attend three specifically designed training conferences alongside UCCF Relay workers in the UK for bible teaching, worship and prayer. These are key times of learning in community and are a great chance to build friendships with other Relay workers. Relay also provides a weekly personal study programme focusing on key doctrines in the Christian faith, together with an elective study on a subject tailored to help each worker grow in their particular interests and gifts.

Relay Internships

Relay also offers some extra opportunities to help people explore particular gifts and ideas for the future – Relay Internships combine a year of spiritual growth and CU work with the opportunity for Relay workers to practice their creative skills in a professional office environment.

Relay Media: A Relay media internship would include work in graphic design, web design and development, and video production. Opportunities exist to visit and learn from a similar team of people in Oxford.

Relay Church Partnership: Keen to work with your church but can’t pass on such a unique one–off opportunity as Relay? Chat to us about what a partnership may look like.

Relay Cross–Cultural: Among our staff we’ve those who take great interest in other cultures and world–views. Relay Cross Culture will offer great chance to grow in your faith and have specific opportunities to learn about other cultures and religions, be mentored in a team and reaching out in this context. You’ll receive some of the top training from European experts as well.

Relay Christian Persuaders: Do you have particular gifts in evangelistic speaking or want to develop them? Christian Persuaders has been deemed by Tim Keller to be ‘the need of the current generation’. We’ll offer plenty of training and give you opportunities to put this into practice.

Relay Arts Elective: gathers like–minded Relay workers to focus on what it means to love Jesus in the arts. This includes time to work on their own projects and receive criticism from others, plus the chance to minister to students from art colleges and courses

We are also open to developing internships in other areas such as Relay Catering with the opportunity to participate in plenty of student residential events; or Relay Politics for those interested in Faith in the Public Square

Further opportunities

Relay Homestart is an option to spend the Relay year taking part in cross–cultural and language training, with a view to spending another year or more working within an IFES movement in another country. It is a great way to experience something of cross–cultural mission and to support the wider IFES community.

Paying for Relay

To take part in Relay you will need to raise your living and ministry costs. Raising finance can be one of the most rewarding ways to grow, live by faith and learn how to use money wisely. You will need £7–10,000/ €8–11,000 depending on location, plus £700 towards training conferences and materials. CUI will support you through partnering with churches and individuals as you seek to raise finances for the year. To date no–one has had to drop out of Relay through lack of finances.

Why do Relay?

Relay is about investing in you: As a Relay worker, you have a team of people committed to your growth – your Staff Worker’s primary role is to support you as try new things, encourage you where you’re timid and correct you when you’re wrong. Observing and working with someone more experienced in the Christian life and ministry is an invaluable opportunity to grow in a life–on–life way.

Relay is about skills AND character: Relay has opportunities to learn all kinds of skills such but at its heart there’s a deliberate focus on growth in character and godliness. A strong distinctive of Relay is the detailed application of grace to every area of life and ministry.

Relay offers a huge range of experiences: In different CUs there will be opportunities to train Bible Study leaders, work alongside CU leaders, help organise mission weeks, give evangelistic talks, lead discussions with non–Christians, work with international students and much, much more!

Relay offers a unique study program tailored to you: As well as the conferences, one morning/afternoon a week is devoted to core study which works through Biblical doctrines and another morning/afternoon requires elective study, where Relay workers choose for themselves a topic to study in depth.

Relay opens lots of doors: Relay is primarily a training year where others will be investing in you. There is no requirement that after Relay you have to go into full–time Christian work! In fact many Relay workers have gone into secular employment, but the lessons learnt on Relay have equipped them and grown them in godliness, not only to be fruitful Christians at work but also to be active and equipped members of their local church.

How do I apply?

Speak to your CU Staff Worker about getting an application pack, or email