For our second Nations Celebration, we recently gathered for a special event celebrating the vibrant cultures of Ghana and Nigeria. Our African Celebration brought our church family together; some from Ghana and Nigeria (including some new friends), some who have travelled to and have a heart for Africa, and those who are interested in learning and celebrating other cultures.
We sat together, ate together, prayed together and heard from Kjee and Crystal as they shared an insight into their nation with heart and passion.
A really wonderful atmosphere emerges at these events. There’s laughter, deep discussion, curiosity, and interest. It’s really special.
The highlight of our African Celebration was undoubtedly the feast.
Colourful, smoky, aromatic Jollof rice took centre stage, accompanied by grilled chicken, homemade coleslaw, and flavourful chicken kebabs. Our talented team’s culinary skills impressed, transporting us to the heart of African cuisine.
Alongside savouring the delicious food, discussions led us to the rich cultures and traditions of Ghana and Nigeria. Through engaging conversations, and personal stories, we learned about community lifestyle, we listened to music, and learnt about life at home. We gained insights into the challenges they face and the importance of prayer into the stability of governments, good leaders, and addressing the cost of living crisis facing so many across the world.
Kjee and Crystal eloquently emphasised the significance of prayer in uplifting nations and their people. We prayed in small groups seeking wisdom and guidance for the leaders of Ghana and Nigeria. Our prayers centred on stability, justice, and prosperity, hoping for positive changes that would improve the lives of citizens and create a brighter future for both nations.
From listening to Kjee and Crystal, we felt the nostalgic longing for the close-knit bonds of extended family and the vibrant life found in community gatherings, which are deeply ingrained in African societies. This sentiment reminded us of the importance of fostering connections and celebrating diverse cultures in our own lives, irrespective of our differences.
“There are so many things that made me happy at the celebration. I love that the event was organised by a group of volunteers from the church, willing to come in and help with the cooking of the meal. In the process of putting everything together, I have certainly become more comfortable with more people in church and the event really helped to “break the ice” with those I wasn’t so familiar with.” said Crystal “I got to let people into my life, my heritage, our wins and losses as a nation. Just telling a story of my culture made me feel a little closer to home. It was an emotional experience for me.” Crystal
We are so grateful and pass on our sincere thanks to the incredible team who prepared the delicious food; they spent an entire day crafting each dish with love and authenticity.
Our African Celebration wove together culture, unity, and prayer into a meaningful afternoon. Through the food, engaging conversations, and heartfelt prayers, we deepened our understanding of Ghana and Nigeria while celebrating the diversity that enriches our community. This event reminded us of the power of coming together, bridging gaps, asking questions and embracing different cultures.
We are already planning our next celebration, and if you have a heart for the nations, and would like to hear more, get in touch with Will
Will is part of the Oak Church in Leeds and has just completed the first year of the Unreached Network Internship programme where Will has been busy setting up events like this, helping his church to engage with the nations that are in the UK.