Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
Saturday 17th January 2015 |
The Well is Deep
This year’s theme comes to us from the churches of Brazil. Brazilians, who have traditionally been tolerant of their various social classes and ethnic groups, are now living through a time of growing intolerance made manifest in high levels of violence, especially against minorities and the vulnerable. The logic that undergirds this kind of behaviour is competition for the religious market. Increasingly, in Brazil, some Christian groups compete with one another for a place on the mass media, for new members and for public funds.
The Brazilian churches have begun to recognise that intolerance should be dealt with in a positive way – respecting diversity and promoting dialogue as a permanent path of reconciliation and peace in fidelity to the gospel. We can share this recognition. Although the competition between churches is less obvious in our islands, we are well aware that competition and violent discrimination lie beneath the surface of our lives together. Jesus challenges us to acknowledge that diversity is part of God’s design, to approach one another in trust and to see the face of God in the face of all men and women.