In the past, family images have often proclaimed the unity and equality of Christians — male and female — and feared strangers. Today on an overcrowded planet, as Sallie McFague observes, the old ideal of friendship with strangers presses forward again: Friendship with strangers and those who are different as individuals and as nations and cultures. After centuries of hierarchical and polarizing models, such friendship models are needed for the survival of humankind: "If humans do not become friends, then they will not survive" (McFague). Friendship breaks through barriers of class, race and gender. This fear of strangers that lingers in all of us could mellow into a curious, creative attraction for the other.

Elisabeth Moltmann-Wendel, Passion for God by Jurgen Moltmann, Elisabeth Moltmann-Wendel