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Parish Nurse Article, October 2016

In Body and Spirit…
A message from the Parish Nurses

There have been many recent events that have prompted renewed attention on the issue in the Church of cultural diversity and conflict. This issue challenges the church to look at our culture, ourselves, and who we are as a faith community. People have struggled with differences in culture and language since very early times. As Christians, we can be affirmed by the certain knowledge that the message of Jesus’ healing love draws all of His children together.

Culture refers to a system of values, beliefs, customs and behaviors that are shared among a group of people. All of us belong to multiple-cultural groups. This influences what we consider to be important, lifestyle and health practices, how we communicate and relate with others, family practices and spirituality and ethics. How can we be more responsive to persons from other cultures?

These many be a few of the ways we could benefit.

  • Pray for God to open our hearts and minds to people from other cultures and ways.
  • Develop an appreciation for other cultural practices and ideas.
  • Attend a worship service in which you would be the ‘outsider,’ and reflect on what it feels like for some of our visitors.
  • Consider periodically attending offering a multicultural worship service.

Culture affects people, their faith and their health. Today, to share the love of Christ with people from other lands, we don’t need to leave the U.S., or even our own state! Other folks are in our communities, and we have a tremendous privilege to share Jesus Christ in both word and deed. We have the opportunity to respond to human needs as a living expression of our faith. Multicultural outreach can also energize our faith community!

God’s word encourages us with these words…. “you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household….”  Ephesians 2:19.

Matthew 25:44-45 reminds us “…Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’ He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ ”

If you would like to contact the Parish Nurses, please call the church office, or email parish.nurse@graceofav.org.

Peace and good health to you all!
Lois Askvig and Amy Fleser
Grace Lutheran Parish Nurses

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