The Reuters Religion Editor Tom Heneghan recently wrote on how the community of the world's second largest religion in Europe expressed their hope for a better relation with Roman Catholicism after the new pontiff took the name Francis.
And in a meeting yesterday with an American missionary, again I heard on the growing muslim population in Europe - it just brought my mind back to where it all started; tracing back how His patient call to me on disciple-making and how His ever-accompanying guidance, grace had stood the test of time.
Born and raised in a country with the world's largest muslim population I still find myself bemused every now and then at how evident the gap is between desperate me and my students -- there's always this invisible wall between us. Christianity is seen as a 'religion' of 'the white people', westerners who are seen as infidels with their culture of drunkenness as alcohol has become a fundamental part of western culture, strong emphasis on being free and morally loose.
What Piper wrote on the life of Saint Patrick, in particular his missional work, is to me encouraging and relevant to the ever-present differences between Islam that's close to my heart and Christianity. He, too, in the fifth century had grasped the importance of understanding his audience, the pagan, unreached Irish, for an indigenous Celtic evangelism movement.