This year’s BMS Italy Action Team
did a great work in Matera, Italy, thanks to the help of Huw and Alex Anderson
who taught them key principles of engaging with a new culture. But how would they get on for a week in a church where over twenty languages from China, South Asia, Africa, Caribbean and Eastern Europe are spoken? (Or “central Europe” as our Polish members keep correcting me!)
This was Broadmead Baptist Church
’s first experience of a BMS Action team and some were just a little sceptical about what they might achieve in just one week! Our church was to be proved wrong.
After enjoying a Zumba class, the team spent some quality time engaging with the mums and toddlers group, helping children cut out fish shapes followed by singing fishy songs about God. Then, in the evening, with Italian ice cream as an incentive, they helped to start a scratch choir for Broadmead’s Got Talent
The rest of the week saw them sharing their stories and promoting BMS World Mission in a coffee and cake morning, leading a Bible study, taking assemblies and workshops in schools, and finally assisting in a film night for unchurched children from the local school.
But the best was yet to come. They taught 25 children to make pizza and pasta from scratch, which resulted in loads of fun throwing dough and flour around the church hall. In the afternoon 30 young people took them snow tubing on a dry ski slope followed by a Chinese buffet, in a display of real faith in action.
However, the Action team took second place in Broadmead’s Got Talent. First place surely went to all the children and young people who played cello, violin and piano! We all ended up singing in Italian.
The BMS Action Team brought together different people, different backgrounds and different languages... but this was more than a melting pot of cultures. Instead it felt like a beautiful mosaic!