‘We Are One’ – Bristol’s International Homecoming
7th December 2017
'We Are One'. That was the theme of Bristol Central's Homecoming Day on Sabbath 25 November, and this year, the church's annual Homecoming Day also took on an international flavour, as besides inviting former members and friends, the church also chose to celebrate the culture and diversity of the 26 nationalities that worship together. The aim of the day was to make everyone at Bristol Central feel loved and valued, and to celebrate that we are all 'One in Christ', and therefore are all brothers and sisters in God's family.
Personal invitations were sent out to some 30 individuals who had formerly worshipped at Bristol Central, or had links to it. In all about 20 visitors came on the day, including former members.
The day which was organised by the pastoral team, started with a very interesting presentation in Sabbath School, by the Filipinos. Family Worship followed, with a Parade of Nations, with the flags of all the countries, special items from a Ghanaian group and the Romanians, and a thought-provoking sermon presented by Pastor Steve McKenzie, on the topic, 'Lean on Me'.
The whole church was then invited to stay for a very generous and international Fellowship Lunch, with dishes from many nations, and where everyone mingled and got to know each other more. So much so, that there was not enough room in the church hall, and so people had to overflow to other areas.
The afternoon programme featured a wonderful spirit of togetherness as people from many countries came up and said a little about where they came from, and gave a flavour of their culture and identity. Representativesfrom many countries took part such as Ghana, Zambia, Jamaica, Barbados, Romania, Hungary, St Lucia, Guyana, and England, and several people came in their national dress, including First Elder, Kwasi Dankwa, who led by example, in a resplendent Ghanaian outfit.
The church also rang out with the sound of singing as there were special items from the Children, Youth Choir, and the Church Choir, and various groups sang in their own languages, including a dramatic entrance and rendition of 'God Bless Africa' by the African nations.
The day ended with everyone singing 'In the Sweet By and By' with everyone joining hands and singing in their own language. There was a lovely spirit all day, and it truly felt that 'We Are One'.
A selection of photographs is available at