interesting use of the word, “misfit,” but more importantly, this reflection stood out to me because lately, sr. terezinha and i have been reflecting on inculturation and our own personal experiences in learning the ways of the people here in the Cordilleras, but more specifically with the different members of different tribes that we work with, here in Baguio City. it has been SUCH a beautiful learning experience. everyday, sr. terezinha and i seem to be enlightened in new, radical ways.
the outcome of these experiences? we are writing a book on mission and inculturation. so excited!
enjoy! 🙂 thanks for journeying with us, foreign missioners!
Foreign missioners are misfits regardless of the culture in which they live and work. Having lived, worked, and loved in both home and host cultures, they feel at home in neither. Missioners arriving in a host culture see that culture from an outsider’s viewpoint. They also take into their lives values of the host culture that reveal less than satisfactory truths about their home culture.
Foreign missioners’ lives are the locale where the winds meet: the winds of two cultures and the winds of two worlds. Because of this, foreign missioners are profoundly connected to the fundamental mystery of humanity. While serving as beacons for the misfits of this world, they in turn receive direction from the very same misfits.
Called to be beacons for the misfits whose lives carry the void that brings them to the gateway of eternity, foreign missioners need some magnifying of their call. Indeed, it is in the mirror of the misfits that foreign missioners are reminded that they have been called and sent by Jesus, a misfit who stretched toward rather than away from the waiting void of God’s promise. Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection offer not protection but the sustenance, the radical support of knowing that God’s promise is best remembered in the void.
– Larry Lewis, MM from The Misfit (taken from A Maryknoll Book of Inspiration by Michael Leach and Doris Goodnough)