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General discussions > Avoiding the Savior Complex when doing mission work

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message 1: by Tom (new)

Tom Schwerbrock | 5 comments Several questions come to mind here: Has the "War on Poverty", started in the 60's by Lyndon Johnson merely been an extension of this "White Savior Complex" of which you speak? Is any question of "culture" out of bounds according to this way of thinking? Christ was quite clearly establishing a new "culture" of forgiveness dependent on contrition, love of the neighbor as one would love self, the servant as the master.... He was a challenge and insult to the Roman and Jewish culture of the time as much as a challenge to modern day culture. So if the culture one is confronted with on mission is contrary to Christ's culture, how does one not, perhaps ever so gently, draw comparisons that put the culture presented in a less than positive light? As Christians, how are we not partial to Christ's way of thinking and therefore prejudiced towards philosophy contrary to his word?


message 2: by Tom (new)

Tom Schwerbrock | 5 comments If white bread, suburban sprawl and neatly pressed shirts and slacks on a Sunday morning are your idea of what Christianity is than I would agree I'm not sure you have much to share on a mission trip. The notion we throw out all judgement and careful consideration of what values we do espouse is wrong too. One must walk a fine but definitive line.


message 3: by Tom (new)

Tom Schwerbrock | 5 comments There is what I call a "country club" mentality among us. We like to look down our noses at "the other", apply harsh criticisms to "their way of doing things" to boost our own ego. We need to look at our mission practices and policies not only from an emotional "does it make me feel good" standpoint, to a more empiric "has it done good" standpoint. Our mission needs to be about them, not us.


message 4: by Werner (new)

Werner | 1821 comments Jonathan, I read your blog post just now. I don't have much (or really, any) personal experience with this subject myself; but I thought you made some very good points.


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