Our post for in the trenches comes from Curtis May. Curtis is Director of the Office of Reconciliation Ministries for Grace Communion International. We’re excited to be able to have Curtis share about what he does with the Office of Reconciliation Ministries (from here on referred to as ORM). Below is Curtis’ description of his involvement with ORM.
At ORM I counsel Christians and non-Christians alike on issues of conflict, disputes and broken relationships in general. We have 27 chapters in 5 countries – the U.S., Canada, Ireland, England and Scotland. Our work has extended into Africa and the Philippines as well. Our Vision is: ‘To put the teachings of Jesus Christ into action by advancing relationships between people of different beliefs and points of view.” Our Mission: “To respond to situations of racial or ethnic tension and to help build lasting, harmonious and accepting relationships.
Our Core Values are guided by Scripture:
1. Reconciliation as a ministry given to us by God (II Corinthians 5:18-19)
2. All humans made from one blood (Acts 17:26)
3. The inclusive mission/vision of Jesus (Luke 4:18)
4. Neither Jew, Greek, male nor female, but all one in Christ (Galatians 3:28)
5. Practical demonstrations of love and faith, including literature resources such as our book, Mending Broken Relationships (James 2:16)
In fulfilling our mission we conduct workshops, seminars and give presentations on the topics of reconciliation and conflict resolution throughout the United States and occasionally overseas. We see the need to stand in the gaps that divide people.
ORM has worked with police departments, city halls, schools and other organizations to participate in the mandate of Jesus “that they may be one” (John 17:20-23). We specifically emphasize this message of oneness as we work among churches in the spirit of interdenominationalism. As Dr. Paul Metzger points out so poignantly in his book Consuming Jesus, the church has a huge problem of race, class and consumerism.
We have received a number of awards and certificates for our work, including the key to the city of Memphis. (Please see “Awards” on our website at www.ATimeToReconcile.org.) We also work in inter-faith settings with Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Ba’hai.