Thursday, 14 April 2016

The Bible in the midst of everything

Friday and Saturday last week we spent in Göteborg. We took part in a conference called:
Bibeln mitt i allt
Which in English means: "The Bible in the midst of everything". The Diocese of Göteborg together with Church of Sweden’s national head office arranged the conference. One contributing factor that made us participate was one of the key note speakers:
Solomuzi Mabuza
We got to know Solomuzi when we lived in Pietermaritzburg in South Africa. He is a pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Southern Africa (ELCSA). He was at the time working at the Ujamaa Centre for Biblical and Theological Community Development and Research, connected with the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN).

Presently he is employed by the University of South Africa (UNISA).
Solomuzi facilitating
the Contextual Bible Study
In Göteborg he facilitated Contextual Bible Studies. It is always rewarding to read the Bible with others. Especially with a commitment that all voices must be heard.

Therefore I also asked Solomuzi to come to Uppsala and share his insights with us at our Institute for Pastoral Education. And so he did. On Tuesday at our school. But also yesterday in another venue. Together with six students Solomuzi and I travelled to the Lutheran sisters’ convent
Alsike Kloster
We met with refugees and asylum seekers from a number of countries. And we read the Bible together. More than ten languages were spoken in the room and the Bible was read in many of those languages. We had to translate to one another, which of course slowed down the process. On the other hand this is not entirely negative:
If you want to walk fast; walk alone. If you want to walk far, walk together
We were truly blessed at the convent. To be in a space were everyone is given a chance to tell one's personal story and to find that this space is created within the biblical narrative. We read Genesis 12:1-9 and this is one of the verses we read:
Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. 
Bishop Emeritus Carl-Axel Aurelius, Rabbi Peter Borenstein, Imam Salahuddin Barakat
and Dr. Lina Sjöberg in a conversation around Abraham sacrificing his son
Solomuzi Mabuza and Sofia Strinnholm
in one of the Eucharist services in the
Cathedral of Göteborg

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