Navigating the Challenges of Cross-Cultural Ministry


diversity-hands-treeAbout one out of every six priests in the U.S. has come from another country, and 31 percent of the ordination class of 2014 was born in another country, according to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA).


As of 2010, one-third of American parishes were home to two or more languages or cultural communities (USCCB).


These numbers are an indication of how truly global the Catholic Church in the United States has become, as it has in other nations. Universal has a new meaning. This globalization brings new gifts and energy, but also requires some navigation to be successful. 


It isn’t always easy for priests and religious coming from another nation to acculturate – or for a parish in a community undergoing rapid cultural change. 


Learn more:

  • The new Connections offers practical tips on successful cross-cultural ministry
  • June 18: Psychologist Suzanne Hollman will discuss “Intercultural Communication and Empathy” in a one-hour webinar on SLIconnect. Pre-registration required (webinar available as an online recording after the live presentation). 

What has your experience been with welcoming international ministers to your community and helping your parish adapt to diverse cultures? What questions do you have about how to navigate this successfully?