February 2, 2014

All nations

I never finished up the end of my trip diary, but it was only a day in LA before I came home that was so uneventful that I don't think I even took photos. And as soon as I came home I hit the ground running; catching up with everyone I missed while I was away, starting back at work 2 days after flying home, celebrating Australia day.

This last weekend I had the privilege of attending a friends wedding. A beautiful wedding, full of love and Christ. One of my favourite things was the way that the couple included the grooms Chinese culture into the service. Everything in the service book was in both Mandarin and English, and both the readings and prayers alternated between being in English and Mandarin. It was really special and a great reminder that language is no barrier for knowing God.
At the reception several of the speeches were also translated. Our church has a community of Mandarin speakers so it's great to see this culture being celebrated in the marriage of 2 members of our congregation, one from an Anglo Australian culture and one from a Chinese culture. 

Then this morning we had a special combined service where all the congregations came together for a service in the morning. I saw that Be Thou My Vision was one of the songs we were going to sing; it is my favourite old hymn and very recently taken a special place in my heart - so I was excited to sing it. Then it was announced that we would be singing the hymn simultaneously in both English and Mandarin. The guy leading the Mandarin out the front did so well to keep concentrating while the other singers and 90% of the congregation were singing in English.
But two hear the two languages melding together in praise,  was one of the most moving experiences I've had at church in a long time. I didn't want the song to end.

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