Alt-right, White Nationalism, and Neo- Nazi, these words and corresponding images, have over the past few days become a more regular part of our vocabulary. Those who identify with these adjectives have created a false narrative that has been for too long left to fester and spread tentacles of hate throughout this nation. The President of the United States,
of this week, offered words that indicated that those who would walk down public streets chanting words of condemnation and hate, carrying Nazi symbols, espousing superiority were no worse than the counter protesters who showed up to condemn their venom. Many of those counter protesters being people of faith, clergy leaders, people who have historically, nonviolently, stood with the marginalized. These are indeed, to say the least, interesting times.
All humanity should be outraged. All who believe that God created human, man and woman, in God's image, should be outraged. Anyone, who can hear/read the words of the creator who upon completion of the creation proclaimed, "it is good" should be outraged. People of faith should be outraged to the point of action. Any person, system, or President who supports the dehumanization of any of God's children should be challenged on that belief.
Of course, the question is how do we challenge this type of hatred, and more specifically how do the folks who consider Epiphany home stand up in the face of this assault on the fabric of all that we consider just. As I stated in my sermon on Sunday, I do not have all the answers, nor do I assume we are all starting from the same place. I'm still learning about the community, who we are, where we live, and what we are passionate about. But I do know that if we do not name evil when we see it, we end up being complicit in it. What is playing out before our eyes is clearly evil. We cannot afford to stand by and not respond to this, that is not the role of people of faith. That cannot be the role of Epiphany in downtown DC. So, what to do? What can start by speaking up, showing up, listening, and educating ourselves about the impact of the systemic silencing of marginalized and targeted people. But, above all we must pray.
Jesus looked at them and said, 'For mortals it is impossible, but not for God; for God, all things are possible.' (Mark 10:27)
God can and does redeem all things.
Other ways to respond
*March for Racial Justice Sat. Sept 30th 10am-1pm details TBA (the date falls of Yom Kippur, and is also the anniversary of a racist massacre in 1919. The date may be changed to allow our Jewish brothers and sisters to participate).
*Unity March Against White Supremacy Dec 3rd. Washington, D.C. Details to Follow