Sunday, November 15, 2009

Intercultural Awareness Workshop for NS Catechists - November 14

The Catechetical Ministry of the Church of Visitation organised a Workshop on Intercultural Awareness for the catechists and RCIA Facilitators of Negeri Sembilan District on Saturday, November 14. The trainer was Rev. Fr. Michael Chua, the Parish Priest of Visitation, Seremban and also the Ecclesiastical Assistant of the Archdiocesan Ministry of Ecumenical and Interreligious Ministry (AMEIA) which runs workshops and training of a similar nature.

The objective of the workshop was to create awareness among both catechists and RCIA Facilitators of the importance of intercultural knowledge in the area of communication and formation. Being leaders in the catechetical ministry, and entrusted with the responsibility of forming both children and adults into active members of the Church, there was a need for them to be equipped with the intercultural skills to build a community as diverse as the Catholic Church.

Being able to work and communicate with people from different backgrounds and cultures is essential in today's world and workplace. In the case of the Church, it is vital. Fr. Michael quoted the late Pope John Paul II in saying that "“The synthesis between culture and faith is not just a demand of future, but also of faith." The Catechists were introduced to the basic principles of multiculturalism in the context of Malaysia. Thereafter, they were led to reflect on the negative trend of stereotyping and the effects of ethnocentricity. Finally. the faith educators were exposed to various suggestions of teaching multiculturalism and diversity to their children and catechumens.

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