Why was the Archbishop of York in Mansfield this week?

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground, pictured  is Archbishop of York John Sentamu
Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground, pictured is Archbishop of York John Sentamu

Who do you think would win in a penalty shoot-out between a group of bishops and a team of charitable volunteers?

A strange question, yes, but the result is not what you would expect.

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground

This is because a team of bishops representing the Diocese of Southwell took on a team from addiction charity Betel at Mansfield Town FC's One Call Stadium.

It is part of a new campaign launched by the Diocese which aims to spread the Christian word to as many people as possible, running 450 events across four days in the presence of the Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu.

The oneLIFE mission aims to reach out into all areas of the community, running hundreds of events to engage with people who do not normally go to church - from film shows and picnics, to gospel concerts and pub visits.

And as part of the Mansfield leg, which launched the mission, Archbishop Sentamu joined bishops at the One Call to watch the church team secure a huge three-goal victory over the charity volunteers.

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground

The bishop team, with Mansfield MP Ben Bradley in goal and led by Mansfield Town FC manager John Dempster, took on the Betel team managed by Stags' CEO Carolyn Radford, and it did not disappoint.

Reverend Tony Porter, bishop of Sherwood, said: "The aim of today is to welcome the Archbishop of York to Nottinghamshire and I'm thrilled to bits that the whole thing is starting in Mansfield.

"We are asking our churches to run what we call 'Christian nurture courses' and to welcome people from the community, of which we've got 79 of those across the county.

"With them we hope to help people explore the Christian faith but in a gentle way.

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground, pictured from left Bishop Paul Williams,  CEO of Mansfield Town Carolyn Radford, Archbishop of York John Sentamu and Bishop Tony Porter

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground, pictured from left Bishop Paul Williams, CEO of Mansfield Town Carolyn Radford, Archbishop of York John Sentamu and Bishop Tony Porter

"Normally it would be six weeks of looking at the bible together, having a laugh and with no 'silly questions'.

"You can ask whatever you like to help you explore the faith. There's a lot of people who want to know about the faith and who want to meet other questions, and that's why we have this."

Archbishop Sentamu added: "oneLIFE's message is about Jesus Christ, and that he's the one who came to give life to everybody so they can have it abundantly.

"What he brings is the very life of God to live in us and make the world full of joys.

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground, pictured is Mansfield MP Ben Bradley in goal.

Launch of oneLIFE mission at Mansfield Town FC ground, pictured is Mansfield MP Ben Bradley in goal.

"We are looking at John Chapter One, and in him was the life that lights us up, so we are using this for oneLIFE."

The Diocese also held a question and answer panel in Clipstone last night, where members of the public could ask Archbishop Sentamu questions about the Christian faith and his role.