We asked two of Tranzsend’s overseas workers to share a few words on how NZBMS’s bicultural journey has helped shape their work overseas.
For some years, we have served within Tranzsend’s long-term relationship with a predominantly tribal organisation in South Asia. Some years ago, I listened to my friend, from this tribal group of one hundred thousand people, tell me of the injustices he had experienced from a different majority people group. I realised how the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi had saved my country from more pain.
Talking with my tribal friend helped me to understand what it was like to be in the minority, and to be misunderstood and disrespected. Coming from a Pākehā background, with a history of insensitive relationship toward Māori, I had some learning to do. I discovered the adventure of serving cross‑culturally was helping us to appreciate the tangata whenua of Aotearoa New Zealand.
From John in South Asia
To do cross-cultural mission is to discover the multifaceted brilliance of God that is displayed in the diversity of all people groups. In our context, I found a people of resilience who have suffered colonialism, partition and natural disasters. Like the pearl of great price, shaped through adversity, these things have formed their values, characteristics and traditions.
I found myself captivated by their vibrancy, craftsmanship, hospitality and spiritual awareness. In learning from them, I wait for them to invite me to participate in their lives and celebrate who they are. Friendships were quickly formed, in which they accepted me as their own.
My desire is that they are empowered to be all that they can be and, in so doing, find God’s love in a new and deeper way.
From Peter in South Asia