Stories

Joining and belonging

Joining and belonging

I had gone with Ahmed to his Sufi group a couple of times, and this time there was an initiation rite for several new disciples. The initiation rites followed the…

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Sharing our stories

Sharing our stories

It all started with my involvement in a cooking group which is part of the offer from our local church community centre situated in the multi faith area of the…

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Miracles, healings and God

Miracles, healings and God

I once went with a group of students to the shrine of Sufi Qamar Ali Darvesh at Shivapur, a village near Pune in India. We watched the phenomenon of the levitating…

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Insecurity and security

Insecurity and security

Miriam had her baby and decided to keep her. For a time she lived in a home for women who were single mothers as her family refused to see her or…

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Thinking about face

Thinking about face

I vividly remember the first time I became personally aware of the concept of ‘face’—which I now know to be linked with ‘shame.’ I was 18, teaching night classes to…

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Understanding salvation

Understanding salvation

A conversation with a Muslim friend sharpened the meaning of salvation for me in relation to these worldview themes. I asked him for his views of salvation. This is his…

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Hospitality: Being a good guest

Hospitality: Being a good guest

On one occasion I was visiting the family of one of the girls from the college hostels where I worked. They were a well-off family who owned their own hospital…

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Jesus Victory

Jesus Victory

In Saudi Arabia I was once the guest for dinner of a Christian Pakistani couple and their two small children. They had lived in Riyadh, the capital, for several years…

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Cleaning and purity

My first 'ah-ha' moment related to what purity means for my local friends in Indonesia was when a neighbour's child messed on the floor in my house. After the mother…

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Protecting the young

Fatima who continually worried about her newborn son being kept safe and healthy placed scissors next to him whenever he was sleeping. “Why do you do that, Fatima?” I asked.…

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