Your identity in your community

On the 17.10.2020, Maat-ECG made its first encounter with the community of Christian Hope Church in Braunschweig.  The Christian Hope Church Braunschweig is an African Church, which does not only take care of souls of its members but also help them find their identity in their respective communities.

One of the pillar of the values of Maat-ECG is self-confident, which can be also understood as, finding home wherever one is.

With the Main topic, “Identity in your Community”, Maat-ECG offers the participants an opportunity to awaken their self-esteem as their contribution in their respective communities. The reflection centered its focus on:

  1. What is integration, and how it is perceived
  2. What is commitment in the community and its implication
  3. When and how one can be integrated in the community;

Conveying the message that, there integration is through engagement (commitment).

The main question, which remain debatable, is to say: “no engagement (commitment), no integration”. Participants understood that far from being an inclusion, integration is not a conceptual, nor assimilation but integration is an exchange. What is this exchange all about?

What makes a person a person is: its culture, its philosophy, its social values, its professional skills, its family values; in short, all what shapes one’s identity. When we talk of integration, we take the model of a pocket, or a handbag, or back bag.

When you pack your belonging in your bag, you are convinced that all are good. However, when you are to pull what you want to use, some of your belongings can be used in private, others in public, others are even expired and you can no longer use the at all. Some of your belongings, you can pull them out, use them and pack them back, others, you pull them out, use them and throw them away. For some again, you pull them out, your surrounding appreciate them, and then you can share with them, or even give them as a gift.

You have to remember that you are not along in this environment, what you are doing, is the same thing your neighbor is doing.

That is the way integration is exercised in a community. There no master of Integration, there is model of integration. Integration is about bringing your positive contribution to the community you belong to.

As take-away, participants became a way of a participative and active integration because; one cannot talk of integration without commitment. One cannot commit him/herself if he/she does not bring any contribution to the community in which he/she belongs.

The message of Maat-ECG was clear to every participant that one has to be active in his/her community to be in solidarity with others.

by Germain Nimpagaritse, Germany