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The plight of the Roma in Europe is devastating. How can we move forward? What will bring spiritual transformation? Listen to this podcast from Roma Bible Union founder, Bob Hitching, for a bold approach.
Thanks for sharing the audio clip . . . very interesting.
I wholeheartedly agree with what Bob shared related to going against the grain of what current streams of missiology say, “just give them what they already desire” or what “fits” their culture, orality is the only way to go . . . I also have some limited understanding of the persecution and plight of the Roma in Europe and i agree with Bob’s assessment that it will not decrease.
From my limited experience, i would say that the desire for Roma integration into general society is more often the desire of Gadje (non-Roma) or sometimes more “intellectual” Roma, but it is NOT the desire of most Roma. Deep in the heart of their cultural and historical background is a desire for and the out workings of that desire to be separate. Macedonians could never understand why we would live in a Roma community. For the most part, the Roma just believed, and it made sense in their world view, that of course we would want to live among them and be like them because they were special, unique, and even favored by God. Who wouldn’t want to be Roma?
I would be pessimistic that, The Year of the Book or Decade of the Book will be fruitful IF the Roma are to find their motivation for literacy in being able to be integrated into the larger society, education has never been valued among the Roma partially because it kept them separate . . . however, IF the motivation for literacy can come from a Holy Spirit wrought desire among the Roma to know the True and Living God, who is the God of THE BOOK, and from the motivation to really know, love and serve the Lord on a deeper level than some of the above-mentioned streams of missiology, and what has typically been done among the Roma that would be an amazing, gracious, blessing from the Lord.
It seems to me that there are deeper sociological, historical, and cultural differences between the Roma and other people groups in Europe than was the case study in England, including not having the desire to fit in, be accepted, and be a part of the larger societal group.
But God . . . who is rich in mercy and full of grace upon grace . . . and who can and does things to bring glory to his name in unique ways . . . he certainly can transform the hearts of Romany men and women, and give them a burning passion for him AND for his living and active Word.
Let’s keep persevering and praying for that very thing!
May the name of the Lord be magnified among the Roma!
P.S. As difficult as it was at times, Cathy & I really do miss life and ministry among the Roma. I guess that makes a bit strange too.
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