Intercultural 'New Beginnings'

A gloriously intercultural service celebrating ‘New Beginnings’ and commitment to shared ministry, took place at the Church of the Martyrs in Leicester recently (24 September) as Michael Jawahar B Ravuri was licensed in the role of Intercultural Ministry Enabler.
A beautiful meld of cultures came together through music, liturgy and prayer, as people from the length and breadth of the diocese joined to welcome Michael and give glory to God.
Bishop Saju spoke about ministry with the acronym BELLS - Bless, Eat, Listen, Learn and Sent – and gifted Michael with a bicycle bell as a reminder on his journey.
Talking about his new role, Michael said: “My primary responsibility is to inspire, train, and support individuals and churches to develop and integrate intercultural skills and ethos into the heart of our diocesan mission and ministry.
“I am immensely grateful to our Lord Jesus Christ and humbled to have the opportunity to serve as an Intercultural Ministry Enabler alongside Jessie and the Intercultural Worshipping Communities Team.”
Recently, Michael came across the painting The Last Supper with Twelve Tribes, by Hyatt Moore, ‘appreciating the beauty, the dignity, and the value of God’s highest creation’.
He said: “This painting reminded me of our vision mentioned in Revelation 7:9-10. My hope is by prioritising intercultural ministry we will be enabled to broaden our horizons and reach a wider community. By casting a wider net, beyond boundaries, we will be able to catch more fish, as the saying goes.
“When I read Acts 2, I am amazed to see that around 16 nationalities were present at the birth of the Church, and each one heard in their own language. This is a powerful reminder that God’s Church has been intercultural from the very beginning.”
He continued: “It's a privilege to take part in this mission to build church that provides opportunities for people of all continents, cultures, ages and ethnic backgrounds to encounter Jesus and to be like Jesus.
“I believe that we are all empowered by God’s power, by His Spirit, through His Word, to work alongside each other with words of wisdom and hope and love - Shaped By God Together for His glory.
He added: “I am excited to journey with all to Bless, Eat, Listen, Learn and Send. Let's chat over chai (चाय पर बातचीत)! I appreciate your prayers.”
Michael’s appointment will also explore linking in with our Intergenerational Communities priority more closely.
Jessie Tang, Intercultural Ministry Director, added: “We are grateful to God for Michael’s appointment as Intercultural Ministry Enabler. His role will enable us to develop interculturally as a diocese, particularly working alongside our IWCs and Partner Churches, as well as developing training that we can offer to help us as God’s people to live out the Gospel which is for all people, across cultural lines.”

First published on: 2nd October 2023
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