19.06.17 | News, A Day to Remember

A Day to Remember...

Mega Kamase Sambo shares her experiences of her stay in Germany
Mega Kamase Sambo takes part in the opening worship of the Kirchentag 2017 in Berlin.

For Mega Kamase Sambo, the Kirchentag in Berlin was a great experience. (Photo: EMS/Karasch-Böttcher)

During my first visit to Germany as a trainee at the EMS Secretariat I went through quite a mix of experiences. When I came to Germany I tried to be open to as many experiences as possible. And this attitude rewarded me with many valuable lessons. I gained many friends who enriched my life.

As a Vicar of the Toraja Church, I was interested to experience Christianity in Germany. Therefore, I tried to visit many historical places, for example the Veste Castle in Coburg, where Martin Luther once stayed and preached. I also joined Sunday worships, visited churches and Christian's gatherings around Stuttgart.

There are some things that really surprised me during my stay. For example I experienced that during worship services children at about nine years old are already allowed to take part in the Holy Communion. In my church and most of the Indonesian churches this is still a dream. There, people are still against this idea because they say that it is one of the principles that missionaries taught them and they do not want to change it.

On the other hand it was quite shocking for me when I went to Sunday services in different churches and there were only a small group of people attending the worship.

I think I have been hearing about this before - and I am a person that appreciates quality rather than quantity - but to see and experience it by myself was totally different. It was worrisome for me to see all this beautiful big historical churches with complete sacramental equipment and instruments mostly empty. Will this be my church one day in the future as well?

Thank God, all my sadness and worries were somehow cured after I joined my first Kirchentag in Berlin. So many people joined the Kirchentag and many of them were young adults and children. They enjoyed their time and took part in many different kinds of activities. I was so happy to see that there are still many dedicated workers in church and religious organisations as well as mission societies that sow the seed of faith. I was really touched to see many parents pass down their faith to their children by attending the Kirchentag together, hoping that their children will follow their pilgrimage.

It was so great to see so many Christians from different denominations, background, ages and nations coming together, celebrate and express their faith. They reminded each other that despite all things that they are going through in their life or in their church, "God sees them".

Returning from the Kirchentag, I just wished that, if only there was a way to "bottle" the energy, the atmosphere, the connections, the enthusiasm and companionship. The excitement, dedication and happiness, so that everyone can bring it back to their church. But then I realised that everyone who came and experienced the Kirchentag is a "clay vessel". Somehow, all of us will "bottle" our experiences and lessons from this event and bring it back to our churches and it will help us to grow our faith and strengthen our church or ministry. At least I know I did. It will be one valuable experience that I will never forget. It will be a day to remember for me for my whole life.

Mega Kamase Sambo