Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Crossing cultures...

We have come to the end of two weeks of intense meetings, coping with (depending on where we came from) varying levels of jet lag, culture shock, theology shock, and probably internal shock- absorber shock as our minibuses navigated potholed roads. It has been exhausting. I need time to be quiet and reflect. But I am very glad to have been here as part of a group of international visitors to worship with Friends from Burundi, Rwanda, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda, and to receive Kenyan hospitality.

How can we help those coming to the world conference from outside of East Africa to prepare for the experiences? At the heart of our FWCC work is going to those places where the differences exist: the differences of culture, language, history, belief and ways of worship. We leave our comfort zones and travel into places where we feel strange and confused, sometimes like helpless babies, but there are Friends in these new places to welcome us in. We cross these boundaries not because of some notion that it is intrinsically useful, but because it is who we are as a People. We are a mixture of all those differences, so we have to find ways to navigate them, if we are to allow the Light to shine through us as a global faith community.

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