There may not have been room at the inn for Jesus Christ but evangelists are hoping for a warmer reception when they join regulars for a pint.

A team of more than 40 Christians, armed with special evangelising beer mats, will be challenging locals to ponder greater questions than who buys the next round.

The evangelists, who will be having a tipple with pub-goers, say the mission will "show God isn't just in church - but down the pub too."

"Jesus was effectively born in a pub car park so its the obvious place," said one supporter Jill Dunn.

The mission is entitled Beer, Boots and Bible and takes place in Guiseley, Rawdon and Yeadon from April 24 to 26.

The mission's local co-ordinator Douglas Austin said the worshippers' approach would be low key and straight forward.

"People don't go to church in the main. It's a bit off putting and in many cases it's foreign territory to many people.

"We believe that if Jesus was here he would go to where people are and they are in pubs and clubs."

It is also aimed at dispelling the fears among men that going to church is "not very macho".

The scheme is one of 20 in the UK being used to train and prepare believers for The Walk of 1,000 Men - an evangelising trek through Kent next year.

The event is being backed by several local churches, including the New Life Community Church, based at Greenacre Hall, in Rawdon; Cedar Chapel Family Fellowship, at Hawksworth Lane, Guiseley; St John's Church in Yeadon and Guisely Baptist Church.

One of the organisers Alison Turner said: "It's the chance for people to find out what's going on and ask questions.

"A lot of people have questions about God and life and death and important issues and often there isn't anyone to ask."

The mission's representatives, all of whom will be wearing special sweatshirts, are trained to spark up general conversation rather than wielding the gospel and making a sermon.

Landlord of The Albert, in Yeadon, Kevin Waller, said he did not mind the group mingling with his customers.

"I said I didn't mind as long as they don't approach people and preach at them."

He added: "I think people will sit down and listen to them, although you will get one or two who don't want to know."

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