Edited By Zachary Guiliano and Cameron Partridge
16. Compassionate Preacher: The Ethos of Effective Preaching in the Age of Multiculturalism. .
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16. Compassionate Preacher: The Ethos of Effective Preaching in the Age of Multiculturalism
Ryan Cheolgyu Kim
ENHANCING GROUP solidarity based on traditional categories may no longer be effective in an increasingly complex and mobile society. Multiculturalism adds another layer of complexity, and its impact and scope continue to increase.1 This crisis, however, is a perfect opportunity for Christian communities to return to the foundational principle of Christianity—compassion and love of one’s neighbor.
The lost art of compassion in our multicultural society should be redeemed by focusing the preacher’s attention on incarnational theology, the ontological theology of the divine becoming flesh. This paper will explicate why the preacher is progressively losing compassion in the current cultural and sociological contexts; theologically elaborate on why this loss matters; and suggest practical solutions to help the preacher become more compassionate in the ministry of the Word.
Observations about Modern Society: Why Are We Losing Compassion?
An old Chinese adage says that animals and humans stick to their own kind. Indeed, we all tend to “put people into an in-group or an out-group,” constantly using “two of the most powerful words of the human race, ‘us’ and ‘them.’”2 Scholars of multiculturalism call this “social categorization.”3 Discriminatory behaviors deserve to be condemned, but it might be hard to denounce the tendency to feel more comfortable among the people whose backgrounds are similar to one’s own. Leaders of various organizations often...
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