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ss nucleus - summer 1996,  Licensed to Fill - Confidential Field Report. Agent 008

Licensed to Fill - Confidential Field Report. Agent 008

The name's McAvity. Phil McAvity. Agent in Special Dental Operations. 'X' had called me into her office earlier, and given me a 'job to do'. My Mission: To find out just what Christian Medical Students get up to when they all meet up for a CMF pow-wow. What was 'Standing in the Gap'? Could we fill this Gap?- and if so, could we charge the Gap extortionate amounts of money for the filling?

Being a master of disguise, I dressed myself up as a student, and donning a couple of pairs of lairy/check trousers I entered the murky underworld of medicine. After a few rounds of 'Land of My Fathers' and 'Wales Forever', I gained access to Cardiff CMF, and hence entrance to the conference.

Having arrived too late to profile Friday night, I decided to concentrate on Saturday instead. I needed time to set up the infra-red cameras, bugs etc, and so decided to set to work in the Main Conference Hall early in the morning. These delegates were students, it was the weekend, I didn't reckon on their rising until at least 3pm, so I had plenty of time. Tip-toeing down to the hall at 7.45am, I was horrified to find a contingent of people gathered for praise and prayer: a time of intercession for Christian doctors and students, the medical schools, and those having to make moral decisions.

I was swept along by the wave of enthusiasm, and so it continued throughout the day. After a talk on God's wrath in Ezekiel 22, and faith in Jesus taking that for us, I ended up in a review group to study this in more depth. At the end was coffee. At last! A chance to duck out to hide and plan my next move. Hiding in a room to think, I was soon joined however, by a group for a seminar. Apparently these seminars were for equipping them with such useful knowledge as 'Dealing With the Dying', a 'Christian view on Alternative Medicine',' Surviving as a Houseman', and many more.

After lunch, I saw a gap. I hid in a different room, and was promptly joined by a contingent of Rugby supporters. My luck (not that I believe in it) just wasn't in. Thus it continued throughout the day: every time I went into a room to plan, in would come people for seminars, conference addresses on mission, even a barn dance!

Obviously Sunday would be a better choice, so I snuck down to the hall even earlier- at 4am. Lo and behold there were students around even then! I hid outside in the garden, and when they'd eventually left, I set up the equipment. The bugs were in place, the tape recorders were rolling, the hidden cameras were in focus. All I had to do was wait until it was all over, and then retrieve the equipment. It was going to be tight- I had to get in during tea, and before we left for the city of eternal rain. Being a professional however, this was no problem, and soon I had all the surveillance gear, and made my way back to HQ.

Back at headquarters, all the special agents pooled their combined intellectual powers together, and after five hours of serious thought, we eventually worked out how to press play on the Fisher-Price 'My First Stereo' system we'd recently had installed. Here we would find out what CMF was all about.

The talks gave some information 'X' would find useful (Apparently 85% of people believe what doctors say). Christian doctors had been put in a privileged position by God to be a voice to the nation and a challenge to the profession. How were they measuring up? Would they stay the distance?

Jesus had already stood in the gap for them by taking the punishment their sins deserved. Would they be faithful in a faithless land, by standing in the gap for him? Would they follow him obediently, no matter what the cost, for the rest of their lives?

I may not have witnessed any encroachment onto our territory, not one diseased or carious lesion to be seen, what I did see however, were 300 students willing to go away challenged to live their lives for God, to be open about their faith, not just having it as a hobby - 300 students willing to put what they'd learnt into practice.

They have another conference in Birmingham in May, and I've just bought a 'Learn to speak Brummie' book, so I may go undercover again, and follow this further. I will send another Field Report later. Over and out.

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