Written by Yanelis Lopez, Ministry Community Director
Last week we restarted programs at Mission Adelante. As always, I find a mixture of feelings inside me. On one hand, as a staff member, I have the possibility to serve others through everything we have to offer. But on the other hand, in my interaction with everyone in the Latino and refugee community, I can understand and experience the same feelings of living in a foreign country and what it means to face the challenges of everyday life, which has proven to be just as difficult, regardless of the culture from which we came.
When I first started working at Mission Adelante, most of my focus was on the Latino community to which I belong and love; however, this past summer, we started new programs, English Club and Refugees Kids Club, for the entire refugee community of KC, where we have been able to make friends from Burma, Thailand, Nepal, the U.S., and other places. Our interaction has been a life lesson for me; I have learned to love and appreciate at a deeper level the diverse cultures that live in our community.
I have understood that God wants us to learn to celebrate what makes us different from each other: thoughts, food, the way we dress, talk, interact, the jokes we make, what impresses us and what doesn’t, our priorities ... It is not just about accepting and respecting others and what makes us different, but about getting to the point where we yearn to celebrate it. Now when I share and live life with my friends from other cultures, I can only focus on the most important thing: we were all created by the same sovereign God, and each one of us has the capacity to reflect His image in a unique and powerful way.