Sharing the Gospel through BBC Radio 4 

By Sharna Brown, Communications Team

Croydon Seventh-day Adventist Church continues to have a far-reaching effect on communities both locally and internationally, so when the invitation to be the host church for BBC Radio 4’s Sunday service came, we jumped at the opportunity, as we had done on previous occasions.   

The rehearsal and pre-recording by the BBC occurred on Sabbath, 2 October and the programme was coordinated and hosted by Associate Pastor Andrew Cudjoe who perfected every minute detail for broadcast on Sunday, 3 October. With only a few retakes, the service was well received by the BBC producers. 

Alexa Good, BBC Religion and Ethics Producer, said, Many thanks for a wonderful broadcast from Croydon Seventh Day Adventist Church on Saturday.  The service was powerful and poignant and the music was super. It was a joy to work with you all.  Thank you so much for making us feel so welcome. I hope to work with you again in future.”

The theme of the worship service was “Renewed and Eternal hope” and this was reflected by a programme of celebration, fusing prayer, scriptures and music, conveying messages of hope, resilience and perseverance. The relevance of the theme is undeniable, as individuals search for tangible solutions to fuel hope in these unprecedented times.  

The medley of hymns and songs sung, blended harmoniously with the theme, which included, ‘Blessed Assurance’, ‘I’ve Got Peace’, ‘It Will Soon Be Done’ and ‘When We All Get Heaven’. The Croydon SDA Gospel Choir, led by choral composer and conductor Ken Burton, added to the spirit filled atmosphere with uplifting and comforting renditions of traditional hymns, gospel songs, and negro spirituals.   

Contributing to the joyful atmosphere, were a diverse live audience, which consisted of members from the Croydon Youth Choir, Croydon Church Choir, Soul Symphony Community Choir, Singology Community Choir, and West Croydon SDA Church. 

The inspiring sermonette delivered by Senior Pastor, Royston Smith, reiterated the importance of always staying positive and having a Godly mind-set, even in this era of diminishing optimism. He gave a reminder of God’s promises and assurance that He is always present, even in the stormy seasons. Pastor Royston also encouraged the congregation to overcome challenges and experience joy with the statement, “Yet, amidst life’s grief and unhappiness, followers of Jesus can experience true joy and live a fulfilled life”.  

The service was well received by the BBC Radio 4 listeners, as evidenced in the following feedback: 

“Thank you for such a joyful service with beautiful singing. You have filled me with happiness.” 

“I've just listened to your Sunday worship on Radio 4. I was struck by your God honouring service. The music was uplifting. The lady who prayed (extemporaneously) was spirit filled and pointed us the reality of the Christian life and its struggles. And finally, the Bible readings and sermon were very helpful, grounded in the realities of life but pointing us faithfully to Christ. Well done for a great service.” 

“Thank you for your inspiring sermon today, bless you and your family and congregation. God is good, he knows our plans, plans to give us hope and a future. What a wonderful start to the day!”

“What a pleasure it was to hear Pastor Smith this morning on the wireless.I normally attend Quaker meeting, and as you will know we have no priest, minister or pastor.I like to think that if we did they could speak with the same voice.Thank you.” 

“Your service on BBC Radio 4 this morning really touched my soul in an unusual way to almost all of the Sunday broadcasts.” 

If you missed the broadcast, you can listen to the full episode on BBC Sounds, which will be available until Saturday, 30 October 2021. You can also listen to a shorter clip of just Pastor Royston’s sermon on BBC Sounds which is available for over a year. We encourage you to share with others while the episode is available, so they too can be blessed.   

At Croydon SDA Church, we broadcast a weekly service, which you can view online via our YouTube channel.  The service airs from 10am each Saturday with our review of the weekly Sabbath School lesson, followed at 11am with our main Worship Service. Our services are available to watch on demand following the live broadcasts for you to watch at your convenience.