A Moment for Mission
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” —Psalm 119:105, NRSV
What TV programs do you watch regularly? Do most of the characters talk and act just like you? If they were to move next door to you, how would they be received?
Check out your favorite magazines. Do most of the articles and ads depict people from your racial or ethnic background?
When you travel, do you go to the most popular tourist venues—museums, restaurants, churches—or do you try to broaden your horizons?
How can people of God learn about other cultures? The General Commission on Religion and Race recently compiled a list of “10 Honorable Ways to Learn about Another Culture.” Here are the suggestions:
- Learn about your own culture.
- Read books and articles written by people from other cultures.
- Read newspapers and online news sources that people from other cultures read for information from their own cultural perspective.
- Follow social media of people from, or organizations that represent, other cultures.
- If you get the chance, travel.
- Learn another language.
- Enter into a mutual cultural exchange.
- Visit museums and cultural centers.
- Take community college classes or continuing education courses.
- If someone from your inner circle of relationships identifies with another culture, ask him or her responsible questions.
Thanks to your congregation’s World Service Fund support, the General Commission on Religion and Race challenges, leads and equips United Methodists to become culturally competent, nurtures institutional equality and encourages vital conversations about religion, race and culture.
—Adapted from General Commission on Religion and Race website: http://www.gcorr.org/10-honorable-ways-to-learn-about-another-culture/. Used by permission.
Loving God, your word guides us on our journey. Thank you for the opportunities to learn about other cultures, embrace similarities and appreciate differences. In your name, we pray. Amen.
From Discipleship Ministries: Sixth Sunday after Pentecost — God of the universe, we come to worship this morning, longing to set our minds on the Holy Spirit, to live with Christ within us. We have not always made room for Christ in the clutter of our lives. We have indulged our wants so often that too often the voice of the Spirit is downed out. As we dedicate these gifts this morning, may it help us to live more in tune with the Spirit and to use our resources in a way that reflects that Christ is Lord of all our lives. In his holy name, we pray. Amen. (Romans 8:1-11)
As individuals and families practiced physical distancing during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, many found extra time to watch movies and read books. Some took advantage of the opportunity to learn about other cultures and increase their intercultural competence.
One World Service Fund-supported agency—the General Commission on Religion and Race—simplified the search for resources by compiling a list of movies and books for children and adults to gain new insight into different cultures.
After viewing the movie or reading the book, participants were invited to answer three questions:
- What did you learn about ___’s (name of the protagonist) culture?
- What is the beauty of that culture?
- What would it look like if we incorporated that culture into our lives?
For the list and links, go to http://www.gcorr.org/movies-and-books-for-intercultural-learning/.
Because congregations support the World Service Fund, United Methodists are challenged, led and equipped to become interculturally competent; institutional equality is nurtured; and vital conversations about religion, race and culture occur. Thank you!
—Adapted from General Commission on Religion and Race website. Used by permission.