Friday, June 21, 2024
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Interfaith relationships enrich us all

It may be time for us to change the heading of this column to “Interfaith”.

For some time after it began, it was indeed a faith column focussed on
Christianity.

Then we began inviting people of various faiths to share ideas about life from the perspectives of their own faith. This seemed especially appropriate, given the multicultural nature of the Australian community.

Even though the South Sydney Herald is published by the Uniting Church parish in the Redfern-Waterloo area, we believed that many different faiths had ideas about God and life which enriched our life together.

We still do.

The South Sydney Uniting Church and the wider Uniting Church value relationships with people of other faiths and cultures, and affirm the place of interfaith dialogue in creating and sustaining a culture of peace and harmony.

These relationships are vital in assisting us to support, encourage and reach out to each other when there are issues and challenges in particular communities.

Over several years of my life, when I was working around the world for the World Council of Churches in international aid, I visited 33 countries.

In doing that, I received glimpses of people of many different faiths and experienced unexpected gifts.

I could see that, if I was open to receiving those gifts, my understanding of the nature of God would deepen and widen.

While I did not need to believe everything related to every faith, I recognised things which I felt I could believe and that lifted my heart and soul.

If the Faith Column in our paper includes articles by people beyond the Christian faith, our readers can decide how they view them and choose what they might add to their lives.

We pray that we may all gain respect for each other as we do that.

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