|Dear Friends in Christ,
As I watched with horror the events unfold in Charlottesville over the weekend, words from our baptismal covenant ran through my mind:
Do you renounce the evil powers of this world which corrupt and destroy the creatures of God?
Do you turn to Jesus Christ [and] put your whole trust in his grace and love?
Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?
In times like these, though we may painfully lack answers, we are equipped with a powerful response: "I will, with God's help."
In the violent and dehumanizing ideology of white supremacy, evil showed up in Charlottesville. And it shows up anytime people are demeaned or denied on the basis of skin color or religion. No state, or city, or village is immune to racism's pernicious effects.Our membership in the body of Christ compels us to respond with prayer, reflection and action. I hope you will read
Bishop Lee's letter,
which includes opportunities to learn and act locally; and also
this post by Bishop Jake Owensby
, which Presiding Bishop Michael Curry commends to us all this week.
There will be more opportunities for us to address these matters as a church in coming months. In the meantime, trust in the grace and love of Jesus. Denounce racism in all its forms. And be relentless and creative in insisting on the dignity of all God's children.
"No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite."