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Greenbelt 2013 – we fed the hungry, prayed with the powerful and made a lot of noise!

The Christian Aid bakery was the talk of the festival, with queues winding their way out of the tent as people patiently waited to take part in our very special challenge. 

Together we baked all of the bread for the Greenbelt communion. Over 10,000 people participated, and we even had time to make a lot more loaves for people to take for their tea.  In total, we baked 1000 loaves!

But the baking was just one aspect. The café served for 12 hours each day non-stop, as people came to grab their tea and cake in time for our packed on-stage programme.

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Spiritual home

Several people commented that the Manna House was their ‘spiritual home’ for the weekend and it’s clear to see why. 

The worship at the beginning and end of each day and the launch of a special Jazz Communion brought hundreds of festival goers into the venue to join us, challenging us all to be the yeast that activates change in our world.

A whole host of speakers

And to really add substance, we hosted panel discussions featuring Jim Wallis, Rev Richard Coles, Dave Andrews, Mark Braverman, Tzedek, Islamic Relief, and our own campaigns and policy team. 

Throughout the weekend our country manager for Malawi, MacDuff Phiri inspired us to hope and act for transformation.

We also had a lot of fun with Harry and the Rubber Wellies as our house band, comedian Paul Karensa, slam poet Harry Baker, and singer songwriters, Paul Field and Martin John Nicholls, sharing their talent and their stories.

What was the point of it all?

Beyond all the bread puns (and there were many) lay an urgent challenge to pray, act and give to bring healing to our world.  Thousands of people took campaign postcards calling for tax transparency and our crash mob from the main stage made some serious noise to raise the issue.

This Greenbelt, we made sure our voices were heard; calling for action on the causes of hunger, praying for sustainable change and giving what we can to stand with the oppressed.

See you next year!

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