As a community we work together toward God’s vision of Just Intercultural Community in which all are able to be fully themselves as created by God. Just Intercultural ministry includes right relationship with God, with each other, and with all of creation. The Biblical vision of Shalom, or Peace, and the idea of Beloved Community help us understand this vision.
We recognize that we have glimpses of this vision and our understanding changes as we explore and experience it together. We recognize that Just Intercultural community and ministry looks different in different contexts. Toward that, we work together to resource communities to develop and name local theologies and praxes. There are several documents that are helpful in understanding the Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning:
The History of FILL
FILL was born out of early twentieth century ecumenical energy in 1921 as The Canadian School of Missions. It’s mandate and name would change over the years and was known later as: The Canadian School of Missions and Ecumenical Institute; The Ecumenical Institute of Canada; The Ecumenical Forum; and The Canadian Churches’ Form for Global Ministries. In 2012 a process of consultation resulted in the focus of the agency shifted from resourcing overseas cross-cultural relationships to Intercultural ministry in Canada. You can read more about this history.
FILL Terms of Reference
In 2017, The Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning moved its administration, staff, and program into The Canadian Council of Churches and became a reference group of The Council. Read the FILL terms of reference.
FILL regularly engages in consultation that shapes its work. In 2018 a nationwide consultation, “Together Resourcing the Canadian Church in Today’s Diverse Contexts” with partners, stakeholders, program alumni and friends helped FILL shape its work:
The consultation identified four main needs in the Canadian context that shape the work: Training for Transformation, Gathering and Networking, Theology and Research, and Collaboration across Institutions. The work of FILL is also shaped by The Canadian Ecumenical Anti-Racism Network, which moved into FILL.
How FILL does theology
In 2019, Fill’s Theology and Research Working Group drafted its own FILL Theology and Research Group mandate and purpose that help shape the work of FILL.
At the core of the work of FILL is a 5 day program offered in and shaped by contexts across Canada. The Engage Difference! program is “5 days focused on faith, heart, mind, and skills for the art of intercultural ministry”. Future program dates and registration are here. To explore hosting a DUIM program in your context Contact the Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning.
Intercultural Ministry is never done alone. Over 200 alumni of FILL programs and hundreds of others across Canada doing Intercultural Ministry are a network of support. The network shares and designs resources for ministry in Canada, gathers on-line and in person, and works together for a Canadian Intercultural Church. The easiest way to connect to this network is through the “Art of Intercultural Ministry” e-newsletter”. Contact us to sign up.
The Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning Facebook page is a constantly growing resource for intercultural ministry with news items, videos, events and more. The DUIM network is invited to add and post to this page.