• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

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Friday, 26 October 2018 11:12

Christians in Indonesia called to be interreligious & intercultural


Fr Raymundo 450Christians in Indonesia are called to be an interreligious and intercultural people if they are to be “Church-in-Mission”, according to visiting Indonesian theologian and missiologist Fr Raymundus I. Made Sudhiarsa SVD.

Fr Raymundus was visiting the AUS Province recently as guest speaker for the annual Mission Day activities hosted by the Divine Word Missionaries at Yarra Theological Union's Study Centre in Box Hill, Victoria. He also visited Sydney, where he spoke to confreres at Marsfield.

Born of a Hindu family on the island of Bali, Fr Raymundus was baptised Catholic in 1970 and joined the SVD in Batu, East Java in August 1979, taking his first vows in 1980 and being ordained to the priesthood in June 1987.

After ordination he was assigned to a parish in Mojokerto, East Java for a short time and has since pursued academic life, lecturing, researching and publishing in Theology and Mission. He is a lecturer at the Widya Sasana School of Philosophy and Theology in Malang, Indonesia and Rector of the SVD Major Seminary in Malang.

“My simple thesis for the seminar on the theme, ‘A New Way of Being Church-in-Mission: The Indonesian Context’, is to be interreligious and intercultural people,” he says of his presentation in Melbourne.

“Dealing with diversity – religiously, culturally, and ethnically – within the country is of particular concern among the Christians (Catholics and Protestants) who are just 8.8 per cent of the total population.

“As a minority group among the predominantly Muslims (87.18 per cent), the Church is challenged to contribute to the sustainable growth and development of Indonesian society.”

Fr Raymundus said there were three questions underlying his presentation, namely (1) How do we describe our context and comprehend our surrounding? (2) Who are we? How do we describe ourselves? And (3) What are we here for?

In answer to the first question, Fr Raymundus says that while Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world, there is still a great gap of inequality of development from one region/island to another. The population of the country is said to be made up of about 500 different ethnic and cultural areas, inhabiting separate islands that compose the mosaic of the country.

“Fortunately, we have a sense of Indonesian-ness, a kind of way of life, namely Pancasila (the five principles), Bhinneka Tunggal Ika (unity in diversity), and Wawasan Nusantara (The archipelago horizon),” he says.

The Five Principles are monotheism, humanitarianism, nationalism, democracy, and social justice.

“And, how then do we describe ourselves? As a minority in diaspora throughout the country,” he says.

“The Christians cannot deny that to be religious is always to be interreligious and intercultural.

“Participating in God’s mission, the Church is challenged to promote peace and love, social justice and reconciliation for the country, based on God’s universal design of salvation for all and work hand in hand with all people of good will, equipped with the fourfold dialogue, namely, dialogue of life, dialogue of action, dialogue of theological exchange, and dialogue of religious experience.”

Fr Raymundus says it’s always “a great challenge to deal with diversity, to be sensitive and respectful of the Indonesian religions and cultures in such a way that we can collaborate with each other for the common good”.

But, he says Christians should not be discouraged by the task.

“Mission is first of all God’s mission, not ours,” he says. “The Church is called to be ready for taking part in this Divine plan of salvation.

“In this regard, building inter-faith networkings is the very essential part of doing mission and being missionary in Indonesia as well as the world today.”