“You Shall Be My Witnesses” is the theme of the Conference of European Churches Assembly taking place in Novi Sad, Serbia, this week. I am here, representing Eurodiaconia and the witness we bring to social injustice across Europe. We will be running a workshop involving many Eurodiaconia and CEC members to discuss how churches and diaconia are addressing social inequalities and what can be do better to share our experience and our advocacy. There are many key speakers at the Assembly and as I write this I am listening to one who is speaking about hospitality and how as Christians, as humans, we are obliged to be hospitable to all in our societies, particularly those who are coming from places of war and conflict. Being witnesses means we must also speak truth – sometimes to power – but often to ourselves. We must speak about how our own behaviours and structures can often be barriers to hospitality.
I am once again humbled to hear of how churches and diaconia work to be hospitable and to be witnesses to social injustices around them – but also how they put what they see and speak of into action. Yes, we are witnesses, but we are also the hands and feet that respond to witness in a world of fragility and bring hope to those we serve.
Have a good weekend.