Bring down the walls
In 1957, the Evangelische Kirche der Pfalz (EKP), a German Church, and what is now the United Reformed Church came together in a covenant of fellowship. And more than 60 years later, on the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, EKP and URC members met to reflect on walls of the past and present. Andy Jackson reports
In November 1989, our TV screens were filled with images of jubilant Germans, standing on top of the Berlin Wall – the physical and ideological barrier between East and West Germany. But 30 years on, despite the hope that came with the fall of the Wall and the reunification of Germany the following year, walls continue to be built worldwide, literally and figuratively – expressions of the walls which exist in people’s minds.
Walls such as the physical one being built building between ‘the land of the free’ and Mexico (which can be climbed and now includes see-saws!). The walls being erected in the UK between friends, families and within communities thanks to Brexit, or the rise of the far right in Germany. The walls that are visible and invisible around asylum seekers, refugees and the displaced people.
The 60 people from the United Reformed Church and Evangelische Kirche der Pfalz, who met in Frankenthal, a town in southwest Germany, last November, represented many partnerships between local churches in both countries, some dating back decades. We looked at how walls are being built up and how we, as a people of God, can break down the psychological walls which can later become physical…
Andy Jackson is Head of Communications for the United Reformed Church
This is an extract from an article that was published in the February 2020 edition of Reform