My main work now is welcoming people to the Basilica of Our Lady of Africa, three days a week. In fact, having lived so many years in Algeria, since 1959, and knowing several languages (Arabic, German, Italian and French), is a valuable asset to receive and inform visitors to this high point in Algeria.
How to reach someone if I do not speak their language? How to get close to them if I do not understand? How to love a people and their culture if I do not understand their language?
Here is a small very useful methodology for respectful communication:
Take responsibility for what you say and feel without blaming others.
Choose empathic listening
Be sensitive to the different communication styles
Take time to reflect on what you feel and what you hear before intervening
Examine your prejudices and perceptions
Take advantage of ambiguities because we are not there to find out who is wrong and who is right
To carve is to think with the heart and speak with the hands. I admit that it is an exercise resulting in a lot of sweat …
“Friendship is the soul of dialogue. True friendship demands equality among people. It is not compatible with feelings of superiority or attitudes of condescension.” Cardinal Leon- Etienne Duval of Algiers (1904-1996) True to its origins, the Congregation pays special attention to the believers of Islam. God, who is at the heart of every person, leads them in ways known only to him. We respect their way of faith different from ours, in the hope that we are all on the way to the Kingdom. In the various countries of the world where we live, we seek to promote an attitude of openness between Christians and Muslims through our activities and our friendship.