A Jamaican visit to Yorkshire
Yorkshire Baptist Association Regional Minister Mary Taylor reflects on a visit by Jamaica Baptist Union delegation to Sheffield and Huddersfield
The visit of the JBU team was very special. We had two different celebrations - Sheffield was held in the long-established Sadacca Sheffield’s African Carribean Community Centre, established 30 years ago.
We heard from speakers about the links between Jamaica and Sheffield which went back to the early 20th century when Revd E Price went from Cemetery Road Baptist Church to become principal of Calabar College Jamaica. There was a drama of the experiences of those who came in the late 40s and 50s as well as powerful preaching from Karl Henlin, poetry and prayer.
Two seminar events looked at significant challenges we face - being inclusive churches and encouraging and recognising BME women in ministry.
Finally we had another celebration in Huddersfield, enjoying jerk chicken from a local enterprise, the Caribbean Women’s Choir, Rachel Modest, a local Gospel singer and Jasmine Wong, singer and pianist. Another important sermon from Jonathan Hemmings to challenge us.
The visit opened deeper questions about what equality truly means, why we can’t just bury the past but have to acknowledge and repent of its continuing effects today. And the joy of genuine friendship and partnership.
Two comments stick with me: whilst talking about the tendency to draw lines within our inclusivity we were urged to focus not on our image as church but on our identity in Christ.
Secondly, we were challenged that we should not accept ‘dividing’ ideas about God but keep seeking revelation of the truth of God beyond our limited and limiting understandings.
Mary reflects more on the JBU visit in her YBA blog post on 26 October That's a good question