In this time of advent, with many people wandering in search of warmth and shelter, I came across the following creed written by José Luis Calan, which I would like to share with the readers of this blog. I am sincerely hoping that the narrative of the nativity story will provide for a new narrative around the many small and bigger refugee crises around the world :
I believe in Almighty God,
who guided the people in exile and in exodus,
the God of Joseph in Egypt and Daniel in Babylon,
the God of foreigners and immigrants.
I believe in Jesus Christ, a displaced Galilean,
who was born away from his people and his home,
who fled his country with his parents
when his life was in danger.
When he returned to his own country
he suffered under the oppression of Pontius Pilate,
the servant of a foreign power.
Jesus was persecuted, beaten, tortured,
and unjustly condemned to death.
But on the third day Jesus rose from the dead,
not as a scorned foreigner
but to offer us citizenship in God’s kingdom.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the eternal immigrant
from God’s kingdom among us,
who speaks all languages,
lives in all countries,
and reunites all races.
I believe that the Church
is the secure home
for foreigners and for all believers.
I believe that the communion of saints
begins when we embrace all God’s people
in all their diversity.
I believe in forgiveness,
which makes us all equal before God,
and in reconciliation,
which heals our brokenness.
I believe that in the Resurrection
God will unite us as one people
in which all are distinct
and all are alike at the same time.
I believe in life eternal,
in which no one will be foreigner
but all will be citizens of the kingdom
where God reigns forever and ever.
My name is Reinier van Hoffen.
Click here for a summary.
Also find the text of a lecture Dr. Achterhuis held at the 2012 Bilderberg conference.