Discovering Truth - Hana
Hana is one of those 'all in' people. No skimming around the edge, if it’s worth doing, she’s there and devoted. Originally from the Czech Republic but studying in the UK, she has a natural desire for adventure and a love for new experiences. Now in her final year of a BA in Choreography and Dance and part of Dawin Dance Company, she took time to reflect with us on rediscovering church and her journey with God over the last few months
What's your story so far with faith?
“My family brought me up in church but it’s something that I’d ignored in my later teens. Once I grew out of the church youth group, I didn’t feel that any of it was important to me. But in September, a friend brought me to church for a barbecue, and I’ve been part of it ever since. I’m now a member of the student group and doing Alpha in order to learn more about faith and Jesus. We’re three weeks into the sessions and I’ve loved being part of it.
Over those weeks I’ve been talking with that friend about how Jesus loves you wherever you are, whatever doubts or stuff that you have, He loves you regardless. It's such an insane truth.”
How have your friends and family reacted to you coming back to church?
“It’s interesting that lots of my friends who have grown up Christian are now interested in faith again because they don’t really remember what church was like when they were young, and so want to reconnect with it. For a while, it made me upset that people around me didn’t know about this great thing that I’d found, but I’ve realised that there’s no point in having regrets. I think everyone needs to find their own way to Jesus and I’m learning that I can only answer their questions and help them along; I can’t just pick them up and put them into this massive pot of Jesus, you just have to let them find Him themselves.”
What are your impressions of the first few weeks of Alpha?
“I love that in our group people share personal things that they wouldn’t in a larger group, it means we’ve been able to pray for everyone. It’s been really good to meet weekly with the same friends and I’m excited to spend more time with them in the future.
Even though we all come from different backgrounds, it’s been great to discover these things together. The conversation has been so interesting when people bring their own thoughts, at the end of the night we're always the last group to finish talking. It's just really lovely to have space to carry on sharing our own experiences.
And there have been tears, but they're good tears.”
How have you found having these faith conversations in your second language?
“When I was younger, I went to a camp in Italy run by Christians from all across Europe, and they used drama to explain the Bible stories. Being a dancer, everything has always been about movement. As long as I’m moving or I’ve got something to do then my brain can process it.
I’ve never known the names of the characters in the Bible in English before so it's like I'm learning them all for the first time again. One of my friends is helping me at church though and showing me where everything is. That same friend and I have been meeting up for a prayer sleepover once a week which has been amazing. It's so powerful to have someone alongside you who understands you, believes in you and wants to support you. She gives me a lot of strength, I didn’t used to like to pray out loud, my whole experience of church growing up in Prague was much more silent, but that's now changing.”
Alpha is an international, open and informal dialogue about Faith, the person of Jesus, and what it all means. For more information or to find a group near you, visit Alpha.org.