Thursday, August 04, 2005

Cooking up a storm in Birmingham

So, what do you call a gathering of 12,000 Baptists? A rumour of Baptists? A gaggle? Possibly a confusion...? Who knows!

I'm just back from the Centenary Congress of the Baptist World Alliance in Birmingham, a strange and perplexing event. I was involved in the fringe festival, hosting a twice-daily music and chat show called Congress Unplugged - it was great fun and seemed to go really well. Through it I met lots of great people - from the UK and around the world.

The Congress proper was an altogether more staid affair, dominated by Americans and their acolytes. Everything of significance happened in English despite the fact that native English speakers were a minority of the delegates. Most of the keynote speakers were American - Rick Warren, Tony Campolo and Jimmy Carter - or European - Myra Blythe, Steve Chalke and David Coffey. Even the speakers from other continents were Western-trained and enculturated.

I guess this is to be expected but it's still a tad disappointing. Anyway, all power to David Coffey who was inducted as president for the next five years - bring on the revolution, David!

Our visit to Britain's second city co-incided with the arrests of terror suspects and a tornado - I don't think the BWA's presence caused either of these things!

listening to Editors - a very accomplished debut album called The Back Room - and Krystaal - an amazing funk, hip-hop, rock and fusion band from Congo now resident in Canada. The band make great music and have an amazing story of endurance and God's grace to tell. They single-handedly made the congress worthwhile!

Now it's tidying things up ahead of going on holiday. I read yesterday that thousands of blogs are started every day but only 13% are updated regularly - so I'm not doing too badly...!

No comments: