In Britain, this ministry is based in Birmingham, a diverse multi-cultural city and home to people from all over the world. Following many years of community engagement, we are actively involved in grassroots initiatives that bring together people from different faith traditions, cultures and religions. We particularly focus on supporting people seeking sanctuary in the city.
Similarly, around the world, Columban missionaries have learned that the best and most effective way to address the pressing social issues of poverty, injustice and environmental degradation is by harnessing the collective wisdom and energies of the different communities and by doing things together with others rather than in isolation.
Outreach beyond the parish walls has led us into an enriching encounter with indigenous tribal communities, such as the Subanen and Aeta tribes in the Philippines, and a concern for the risks to their way of life from human greed and consumption.
Mauricio Silva is the Interreligious Dialogue Co-ordinator here in Britain. Besides his work as co-ordinator of Fatima House, which provides safe accommodation and sanctuary to female asylum seekers, his focus continues to be on building relationships and supporting interfaith initiatives particularly among migrants and disadvantaged communities across Birmingham.