The flora of South Africa is more diversified than any other part of our planet. It is part of the beauty of this land. Diversification is one of its strengths. So often we talk about tolerating the differences in others or “being in dialogue” to learn about other beliefs, faiths, or thought. Yesterday we learned that the JL Zwane Presbyterian Church in Gugulethu Township celebrates diversity, even and especially when it makes them uncomfortable. They were the first church in Cape Town to take on a ministry to confront HIV/AIDS, and were much maligned for doing so early on. They have learned to be in relationship and partnership with other churches and organizations that they otherwise would not have aligned with. In doing so, they have discovered a rich and thriving ministry. Their openness to diversity has been strength in building the kingdom of God.
Scripture continues to point us in the direction of being in relationship with “other.” Even unto the Holy Other in God. This is the gift of diversity worth celebrating.