Our parishes are called to equip parishioners as missionary disciples and in order to do this, leaders need insight into how the Catholic faith and identity are connected to culture. That’s why the Diocese of St. Petersburg has introduced an initiative to help parishes improve how they welcome, receive, and encourage diverse cultures and invite them to assume roles of leadership in the Church.
This initiative is called “Building Intercultural Competence for Ministers” (BICM) and it was first developed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church. The program focuses on training for intercultural competency to help parishes thrive by enabling them to tap into the vitality of emerging new groups
The five guidelines that have been developed into five learning modules recommended by the USCCB Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church are:
- Frame issues of diversity theologically
- Seek deeper understanding of culture
- Develop intercultural communication skills
- Expand knowledge of the obstacles that impede effective intercultural relations
- Foster ecclesial integration/inclusion
For more information about Building Intercultural Competencies for Ministers, go to the USCCB’s website.