Sunday, June 10, 2007

A Good American

Jen Tyler shared her day with me.
Jen is a student at Garrett Theological Seminary in Chicago. She is spending her summer (our winter) in South Africa to reflect on her inner promptings to live and work in Africa. And I have set up a programme that introduces her to the variety of cultures and people that make up our land.

So Jen spent the morning with me worshipping with “coloured” communities. These are people who walked to church in the pouring rain; people who choose to go to church because they need strength to cope with the harshness of cold wet winters; people who are currently on strike for better wages; people who sing for courage, and who huddle together for shared support.

And next weekend she will be in the Xhosa community of Masiphumelele. These are people who live in shacks made of corrugated iron and wood; rural people who have come to the city looking for the mythical “gold paved streets”; people who bring melodious songs and vibrant red and black church uniforms; people who will welcome this American export with warmth and joy.

And I want to believe that there are more Americans like Jen: because from the tip of Africa, most Americans appear to be insensitive to people who think differently, are unable to see their desire for world domination as sinful, and are unwilling to share their wealth – unless you think like an American.

Jen is not like this.
She is warm, caring, and genuinely interested in the people she meets. I believe that she will find a warm welcome here.


Dave Lynch said...

Wonderful, a bright hope in a dark world

Mev Dominee said...

I trust that she will have a blessed time in our lovely country.

bugs said...

Perhaps it is time that we too take a new look at all in our country and see our church as if with new eyes - perhaps it is not too late for us locals to become excited about ministry in Africa