Alex Mandes serves as the executive director of the All People Ministry for the Evangelical Free Church of America, as well as the founder and president of Immigrant Hope. Before joining the EFCA leadership team, he served as a pastor for 17 years. He is on the boards of The Navigators, The Immigration Alliance, and the National Association of Evangelicals. Mandes’ latest book is “Embracing the New Samaria: Opening Our Eyes to Our Multiethnic Future.” He holds a D.Min. and a Master of Theology from Dallas Theological Seminary, and a master’s of science in social work from The University of Texas at Austin.
Our communities consist of immigrants, refugees and people of numerous cultures and backgrounds. However, we still find ourselves living in a place much like Samaria — where people were looked at differently because of race or ethnicity. Unless we engage like Jesus did with all people of all backgrounds, we will likely miss what God is doing in our generation.
In Today’s Conversation podcast, NAE President Walter Kim talks with Alex Mandes, author of “Embracing the New Samaria,” about the importance of our multi-ethnic future.
Walter and Alex also discuss:
- How our response to fear impacts the Church’s mission;
- How migration patterns can be an evangelistic tool;
- What leaders and churches can do to bridge cultural gaps; and
- Where we can find encouragement in the hard work of racial justice and ethnic embrace.
Read a Portion of the Transcript
Walter: How does our ethnic identity relate to our identity in Christ?
Alex: I see ethnicity as a gift but not for me. In fact, my ethnicity and culture never trumps the will of God. There are parts of my culture that I have to reign in and say that’s not in the Scripture. But there are other parts of it that are actually a gift. You know, we sleep with diversity every night if you are married. As a counselor I’ve come to realize that God intentionally marries us to people that see things different from us. I think those of us who have learned how to live with that in a good way have learned that’s not a curse, that’s a blessing … .
I’m convinced that different ethnicities see different elements of God that we miss … . Diversity not only helps us see different facets of God, but they’re also the force multipliers in terms of compelling the gospel beyond ourselves… . Diversity helps us see things about God. It helps us see things about each other. So no wonder the diversity propelled the gospel through the book of Acts.
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- Read “Embracing the New Samaria: Opening Our Eyes to Our Multi-ethnic Future” by Alex Mandes.
- Listen to these related podcasts:
- Read “How Institutions Can Advance Racial Reconciliation” by NAE President Walter Kim.
Today’s Conversation is brought to you by Brotherhood Mutual.