Saying no to xenophobic attacks in K&K

Schoolchildren at St Cyprian’s Cathedral school (pictured) held a march as part of the Kimberley and Kuruman churches’ response to recent xenophobic attacks in South Africa. Kimberley and Kuruman Diocese is linked to the Oxford Diocese and The cathedral and the church of St James, Galeshewe, which is linked to Marlow, also held two services, at which the bishop, the dean, and Father Thomas Mhuriro, a Zimbabwean priest serving in the diocese, preached. SONY DSC

The liturgies at the Cathedral and St James placed the questions surrounding xenophobia in a theological context. The readings were Jonah 4: 1 -11, Acts 10: 9 – 35, and John 17: 11-23, each focusing on a different aspect of God’s love for people considered as “outsiders.” Prayers drawn from different parts of Africa were a reminder that those from different countries are children of the same Lord. The Bishop’s sermon emphasised Peter’s discovery that “God shows no partiality,” challenged people to examine their own deep-seated assumptions about other groups, and called them to allow God to do transforming work in their hearts as he did with Jonah and Peter.

Diocesan World Development Adviser, Maranda St John Nicolle, who was visiting and attended the services, said: “It was inspiring to see the church take a leadership role in fighting hostility to people from different backgrounds and emphasising our obligation welcome the stranger.”

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