For the last fifteen years this day of the year has been about one thing; last minute packing for Detling Summer Celebration making sure everything is ready for a rush to the Kent County Showground first thing on the Saturday morning to set up and sound check equipment in time to play for worship celebrations for the next 6 days.
I was very sad to hear that People Without Limits had announced that this years’ event would not be going ahead – not just because I’ll miss it so much but because of all the friendships that won’t be renewed this year (as they have for the last 15) in the unique friendly atmosphere of this particular event. Somehow ‘Detling’ really did manage to feel more like the annual gathering of an extended family than a Bible Week or Conference.
As People Without Limits continue to prayerfully consider the future for the Detling Summer Celebration I have been delighted to hear of a number of church groups in the region who, having supported Detling for many years have decided that rather than miss out on that family-get-together this year, they would work to put on their own local events (Abbey Fest & Fortify) in its place.
Whatever the future holds for the Detling Summer Celebration I think it’s a wonderful tribute to the heart of what the ‘Detling family’ have built together all these years that, in its absence this year, groups of people have felt motivated and empowered to create something new together.