It has been quite an exciting weekend here in Germany!
If you were not aware, one of the most popular sports in Germany and Europe is Soccer/Fußball.
This past weekend was the Finale of the die WM/ die Weltmeisterschaft in Brazil, South America.
The Finale featured two really formidable teams: Argentina vs. Germany. Everyone in Dresden was at the edge of their seats awaiting the match. Hopes were high because Germany had a chance to win, but there was always a possibility of loss. Despite the possibility of loss, the Germans were excited nonetheless.
Sunday was a happy and sad day for many--it was the farewell church service for Pastor Rehr in our congregation at the St. Petri-Kirche. This service lasted two hours, but it was well worth it. Pastor Rehr gave helpful encouragement and comfort for the congregation from the Word of God during the sermon. He made a point during the sermon to say the following: "Some of you will want to say to one another--let us make everything new--new liturgy, new feel to the congregation, new atmosphere, new music, new everything....some of you will say to one another--let us keep it the way it is and some will say--let us shape it to what it was before 1995." He encouraged the congregation to do the following "If what you decide is not what everyone can work together to build and is not built strongly on Christ and his Word, then is it really worth doing?"
During the service, I had the opportunity of singing the Bach Cantata that I had been working on with the choir over the past month for this very occasion. It was great to finally sing it for the congregation. Almost half of the congregation participated in the singing and playing instruments for the Cantata. If you were unable to read my last blog featuring the link to a version of the cantata...here it is again : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Oqk9xoIsWg
After the service, I was able to take a picture with Pastor Rehr before the altar in the church. According to many in the congregation, this is a great sign of honor and respect that the Pastor wanted to take a picture with me before the altar. I have built a great foundation of respect and partnership with the members of this congregation and I cannot thank God enough for the opportunity to be here in Dresden.
What did the evening bring for festivities? BBQ!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We had a delicious BBQ before the Finale! I ate my fair share of brats and steak! It was so scrumptious! Everyone was happy to see that I was wearing a Germany T-shirt in honor of the die deutsche Mannschaft. An American cheering for the German team?? THAT IS SO COOL! It was a hard fought game, but in the end--Germany won 1:0
Dresden erupted with celebration and the amount of sleep that everyone received was minimal due to the excitement! Following the win will be days of celebration in Berlin and throughout Germany.
How long do I have left to experience Germany? 13 days. I am looking forward to coming home and seeing my loved ones again! I am thankful for this experience and I can't wait to see how God will shape the rest of our futures together.
Until we meet again, Auf Wiedersehen!