Every year I get excited about the Eurovision Song Contest, and this year I have convinced my husband to let me host a Eurovision party! There will be flags, themed food, bingo cards and of course, a whole evening of the best songs from the continent (and slightly further afield!) But I don’t just love Eurovision because of the big ballads and cheesy pop music. I love everything it represents.
The Eurovision Song Contest began in the 1950s, just as Europe was re-emerging from the ashes of the Second World War. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) wanted to find ways to bring together the countries of the EBU in a ‘light entertainment programme’. Since the first contest in Switzerland in 1956, when only seven countries participated, the contest has grown to an incredible 43 countries participating, and is watched by over 200 million people worldwide!
But why am I talking about a song contest when I should be promoting a law conference? Because the theme of uniting Europeans is at the heart of both, and as a self-confessed Europhile, that is a really exciting theme! Only the 50 Nations 1 Fellowship Conference will be focussing on an even greater unity than music – unity in Christ. Over four days we will be unpacking John 17, and thinking about how we, as brothers and sisters in Christ, can be equipped through God’s word to be salt and light within our legal practice. We will be worshipping God together, deepening our relationship with Him and with each other.
Just as that small broadcasting committee sat down in 1951 to plan their vision for Europe, this October we will be planning our vision – how we can seek God’s truth and justice for Europe. We may not reach over 200 million people on one night, but our prayer is that we will all leave Berlin better equipped to speak and live out the gospel of Jesus Christ. And so, if all 50 Nations are represented and equipped for His service, just think how many people we can reach together…!