Looks like this weekend will have been devoted to Wimbledon and World Cup, attending one after hours of queueing with classy ladies in sundresses (didn’t get to see Fed or Justine, but did see an understandably very tired John Isner after his longest match in tennis history, and got to have strawberries&cream outside Centre Court!) and watching the other on TV amidst a football-crazy country. We’re going to try and find a pub after church tomorrow to catch the England/Germany match, which should be quite exciting. (All the fundamental Baptists out there reading this post will find that shockingly ironic I’m sure, going to a pub right after worship service, but pubs here are more for socializing than anything, and I always drink orange juice, lol.) Gotta love British World Cup fever.
Went to Westminster Abbey again today (toured the inside a few days ago, where England’s greatest are buried) for evensong service with Mel. It was very solemn, somewhat stiff, with beautiful, pure music. The service seemed to be more ceremonial than anything, and most don’t seem to mind that. The tradition is the draw for most people, after all, but to me and Mel it was like mini-church. It was refreshing to hear Scripture read and hymns sung, however stiff and formal they may be because sometimes (like this past week) I get the thirsty feeling that I just really need some church. Most churches here seem rather dead and empty, just memorials now, and while Westminster is in some ways just a large fancy memorial to famous poets and composers and scientists, it was nice to go in not as a tourist but as a worshipper. To soak up the sung words that were just history to some but Living Water to me.
Going to a Chinese service at St Martin-in-the-Fields tomorrow. Chinese churches just fascinate me -they seem to be all over the world! One of my favorite projects I’ve done during college was a research paper on Chinese-American churches, so the idea of a Chinese-British church is really interesting to me. Why and how does race comes into play with how people worship, and why have the Chinese in London chosen to “separate” themselves by race to fellowship here (i’m assuming language is a big part of it)? I’m very curious as to how this Chinese church will compare to the ones I’ve been to in the States and in China and Taiwan…I think my roommate here, Yixiao, is coming with me, just to check it out. And she can help translate the vocab I don’t recognize. ^_^