When 2017 Houghton College graduate Daniel Bellerose went to Tanzania for a semester, he was intrigued by how people of various religious beliefs were able to come together to form one community.
His thoughts on such unity, titled “Doing ‘God’s Work’ in Tanzania,” were recently published by The Interfaith Observer, a monthly digital journal that explores interfaith movements. The article recalls his experiences with people of Christian, Muslim, and pagan faiths and their opinions of one another.
Bellerose sought to “bring people together… to unite Christians, Muslims, and pagans in Tanzania while working to improve their lives communally.” Growing up in with a Western academic and cultural background, Bellerose expected to find animosity between the different faiths; to his surprise, however, he saw that people in Tanzania observed few if any differences between him or herself and a neighbor of another faith. “The example of Tanzania, and the wonderful people living there, is an inspiration for those of us in the development world,” Bellerose concludes.
This Tanzania experience led him to start the Global Symmetry Project, an organization working to create international interfaith community by engaging in research, development and environmental community building.
Bellerose is currently employed at Eastern Mennonite University as a program assistant at EMU’s Center for Sustainable Climate Solutions, and is an advocacy corps organizer with the Friends Committee on National Legislation.
To read his article in full, visit www.theinterfaithobserver.org/journal-articles/2017/11/14/doing-gods-work-in-tanzania.