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Cross-Cultural Church Outreach Program to Hispanic/Asian, Creative Essay Example

Pages: 2

Words: 572

Creative Essay

The pastor’s prospective outreach programme to the Hispanic and Asian communities requires a scriptural foundation, so as to remain consonant with the life and teachings of Christ. Hence, the basic orientation of the programme should be based on an understanding that it is an embodiment and practice of Christian ideals. This provides the framework in which the actions of the outreach programme are planned and enacted: hence, there is an emphasis on the love of Christ and the charitable nature and humaneness of the gospel that provides the guiding light for community work.

At the same time, the task of the outreach programme is made more specific by the fact that it is to be put into practice within the Hispanic and Asian communities. Accordingly, the issue of cultural difference becomes decisive in enacting a successful programme. In this regard, two issues can be highlighted: firstly, a sensitivity to cultural difference, and secondly, the universality of the Christian message, which interprets such difference as indicative of the different paths the individual takes towards Christ. The pastor must respect difference and understand that cultural differences inform a basic approach to the world: one must remain sensitive to these variations in viewpoint. At the same time, the message of Christ is all inclusive, such that the interpretation of cultural difference from a Christian perspective evokes the horizon of a fundamental unity that cuts across cultural difference. Balancing these two premises becomes the distinctive feature of the pastor’s work, so as to not disrespect cultural difference, while also adhering to the unity of Christ.

In this regard, each community should be approached from their relation or lack of a relation to Christ. The lack of a relation to Christ does not exclude the participation of the communities in the outreach programme, since it is founded on notions of Christian universality. Hence, in regards to the Asian community, wherein some members may not be of a Christian background, the absence of the latter cannot be interpreted as their exclusion from the programme itself. This would only overlook the universality of Christ’s message. Rather, the outreach programme in its non-exclusionary practice demonstrates to those of the Asian community, despite their potential lack of a Christian background, the openness of the Christian Church. The outreach program becomes not only a means with which to help others and provide counseling, but to show the fundamentally open character of the Church to the community.

In the case of the Hispanic community, they are by and large already of Christian background. Hence, the Christian message is not something alien to them, but rather merely needs to be re-iterated in a caring manner. The availability of clergy to this community reminds the Hispanic community of the positive role Christ and the faith can play in their lives, and becomes a means with which the community can re-acquaint themselves with Christ’s teachings and the message of universal love.

The outreach programme into Asian and Hispanic communities is an opportunity to provide basic spiritual services to citizens, while also familiarizing and re-familiarizing them with the Christian message. The content of Christ’s teachings will always be an unshakable and eternal foundation from which to base such actions. At the same time, Christ’s sensitivity to cultural differences also makes such sensitivity an obligation of the pastor. The radical practice of love in the form of such programs becomes the best example of the real-world effectivity of the Christian message.

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