Our church has close links with two church churches in Germany, the Friedenskirche (Peace Church) in Ludwigshafen and the Kreuzkirche (Church of the Cross) in Dessau.
Ludwigshafen is in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate and the Friedenskirche was founded in 1932 when the town’s major employer, the chemical company BASF, was expanding rapidly. In 1963, following visits of young people from Surrey to Germany and from Ludwigshafen to Banstead, our two churches formed a special partnership to promote friendship. Since then there have been regular exchange visits of young people, church members and Elders. Many visits combined holidays with conferences to discuss questions of faith and Christian witness affecting churches in both countries. Close friendships have been established between several families in Banstead in Ludwigshafen. Visit the Friedenskirche website.
Dessau is in the state of Sachsen-Anhält, near Wittenberg, where at the university in the 16th century Martin Luther developed the ideas that were central to the Reformation. The Kreuzkirche was founded in 1933 when the suburbs of Dessau were extended southwards. Shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 an Elder from the Kreuzkirche was invited to spend a weekend in Banstead. This led in 1991 to a return visit to Dessau by a small party from our church which was given exceptional hospitality, and it was agreed the two churches should form a link. Most years since then a group from one of the churches has visited the other, with many young people taking part. Visit the Kreuzkirche website.