Welcoming our African Caribbean sisters
On the occasion of our fouth anniversary, we decided to open up our Bridge of Peace to the women of the Afro Caribbean community, as this year we are celebrating the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade.
We had a heartwarming and colourful celebration at the Multi Cultural Community Centre on Saturday March 24th. Over 40 women came together from the various communities in Watford. Louise Rawlence, our MC, guided us through the afternoon and offered inspiring songs together with her friend Marva Sobambi. After a report of the annual activities of the Bridge of Peace, Cll Janet Baddeley and Sharifa Chaudry (both Ambassadors for Peace) gave their testimony on how the BoP had enriched their life. The movie about the Women’s Peace rally in Jerusalem brought tears to some of the women present.
After a song from Phyllis from the Afro Caribbean community, Tina Coombs, Vice President of the WFWP Europe spoke about “End of All Slavery, Building a World of Peace”. On March 25th 1807, a bill was passed in the Parliament bringing an end to the slave trade in the British Empire. But still today over 12 million people continue to suffer from various forms of slavery. Tina called us to play our role in bringing an end to all this suffering going on around the world: “Sisters, this is a time when our hearts need to become one, our minds determined and our hands busy co-operating. We need to love and give our support to working together to heal the wounds of the past, change the present and build a secure future for our children’s children and generations to come. As women and as mothers we have a crucial role to play. The time has come where we need to understand, feel and follow destiny’s call to be initiators of harmony; and bring reconciliation,- by nurturing peace in our own hearts and in the hearts of our families, men, women and children in our communities and cultures…”
After our main speech, Louise and Marva sang “Love can build a bridge” and introduced us to the proceeds of the Bridge of Peace ceremony. 16 pairs came forward. Christian, Muslim, White, Black, Brown all came together in a wonderful sisterhood ceremony. There were a lot of smiles and watery eyes, when we crossed the Bridge. We embraced each other regardless of our faiths, cultures and races. The new found sisters sat together, exchanged addresses and found out more about each other. After we recited the sisterhood pledge prommissing to become agents of peace and practice compassionate love among us, in our family and in our community.
Cll Janet Baddeley gave some congratulory words at the end on behalf of Mayor Dorothy Thornhill who was scheduled to come but was called out for some emergency. We concluded the afternoon with an improvised joyful Afro Caribbean dance and spent some time sharing together during the refreshments. Many of the ladies who came were moved by the experience, their hearts and minds had really be touched by the spirit of God.
Go to "Love can build a Bridge" (song) page: Click here.
To return to the Sisterhood page: Click here.