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News inserted on 30/09/2019

SMSM Assembly for communities in Burundi, Tanzania and Rwanda: Interculturality

SMSM SistersThe assembly met around the theme: “Committed to live interculturality as SMSM”. It was facilitated by Sisters Euphrasie MUKAMANA and Hélène DIOUF in Butare for the sisters from Burundi, Tanzania and Rwanda 6-7 June 2019.

We see this reality lived in our SMSM communities as an international congregation with sisters from diverse cultural backgrounds. At our assembly we were a group of sisters from nine different cultural backgrounds and nationalities. 

The definition of culture reminds us of who we are, where we have come from, our identity, what we have in common, and how we are also different from one another. It is a call to recognize this more consciously as we open ourselves to those who are « different from us ». In other words, to know our own culture better; that no culture is perfect, but has richness and strengths as well as weaknesses. Because of this we are invited to discernment and a continuous conversion.

It is important to understand three key words/ concepts – applied to our smsm identity:

  • multicultural living:  we are people coming from different cultural backgrounds
  • transcultural living:  we have left our countries of origin in order to commit ourselves to living together in the country to which we have been sent
  • intercultural living:  we live in communities of faith as religious women who have a common goal and a shared mission

In our sharing, we highlighted the richness, the difficulties and the challenges, as well as our deep desire to live this interculturality better in our respective communities, in the countries to which we have been sent, and in the congregation as a whole. It is a challenge we face each day because each one is aware of the path we have undertaken.

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