Spotlight 13/2019: The wealth of diversity!

In his reflections on our annual motto, District Apostle Tshitshi Tshisekedi from the Democratic Republic of the Congo calls on us to value the diversity of gifts and abilities, rather than seeing them as differences …

Usually, when we are asked to describe two people who are standing in front of us, we tend to perceive their differences much more quickly than their common points. This is all too human.

On Pentecost this year, the Chief Apostle told us that the Holy Spirit is working and acting upon us. I have a suggestion for a work that the Holy Spirit can do upon me, namely to change my perception of my neighbour, of the ordained ministers, and of the Church.

Instead of describing what makes me distinct from my neighbour, what the differences are between the various ministers, and what makes up the variety found in our Church, I want to concentrate on the things we all have in common, knowing that we will always be different from each other.

Our differences, whether they are geographic, linguistic, socio-cultural, age-related, gender-based, or based on our sexual orientation, are a source wealth, provided we accept our neighbour as he or she is, just as Jesus accepted us as we are. Together we possess a wealth of mining deposits that we have not yet sufficiently exploited. I am going to mention some of these.

  • The love of God: this wealth was deposited in us at our Holy Sealing, when we received the gift of the Holy Spirit. God wants to save us all together; then let us also love each other.
  • Divine grace: this wealth is given us by God without us deserving it. Thanks to this grace we will be saved. Let us support one another in our weaknesses and not look for excuses to justify our own weaknesses by pointing out the weaknesses in our neighbour, the ordained ministers, or in the Church.
  • Divine peace: this spiritual gift is linked to our childhood in God. And even if there are many uncertainties and wave around us, Jesus is and remains the good captain who assures that He is with us. Let’s not need be afraid. Let us be at peace in Him and at peace with others.
  • Divine hope: this last deposit is nourished by the Holy Spirit, who works in us. The Lord will come soon. I do not only see this as a promise, but rather as a profession of faith. Let us strengthen one another.

“There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all” (1 Corinthians 12: 4–6).

Photo: ENA DRC

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Tshitshi Tshisekedi