In this week’s edition of Contact both of your pastors will share a single column. It is important for us to speak in one voice in these days of anxious division.
In response to a Presidential election whose results we found to be gut-wrenchingly awful, we found ourselves considering what the Church can be, indeed what the church must be, in such times as these, and here is some of what our conversation has rendered.
- In the immediate aftermath of the election, we believe, the Church can—and must—be a place of comfort for those who need a sheltering place to grieve. The death of a dream is a big loss, and there will be bigger losses to grieve as well.
- As the shock of the election is replaced by the challenge of ongoing and discouraging fear, the Church can—and must—be a community that bears witness to God’s generous grace in the world. We need to lavishly give love to one another, and believe in the power of love to cast out fear.
- The Church can—and must—find ways to articulate hope, demonstrate courage, express love and dispense compassion. We need to do this even when it comes at great personal and financial cost, and even when it faces stern resistance from the powers of empire, prejudice and fear.
- For the long haul, the Church can—and must—be a community of creative resistance. In worship, in education, in creativity, in prayer, on the streets and to the ends of the earth, we must demonstrate the reality of God’s kingdom as a place where all God’s children are valued, loved, included, embraced and nurtured.
- Finally, eternally, the church can—and must—be a community in which the people dream together. We need to dream big, listening for the Spirit’s call as she calls us as transformed souls out of our slumber and into a morning that dawns with joy.
So what will we do together? We have been presented with the beginning of what will surely be a series of challenges. We can stay centered on the words Clinton quoted from the Apostle Paul (Galatians 6:9), “let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time, if we do not give up.” Will we be harboring refugees? Protecting natural resources like water, soil, and air? Fighting once again to protect civil rights for women, minorities, the LGBTQ community? Feeding the hungry? This work will take talent, vision, money, and organization. Perhaps we can use our “mpc election” googlegroup to expand our political conversations, or perhaps we will need some church-wide brunch and lunch tables for discussion. Let’s strengthen and prepare, so that we might “not grow weary.”
This work of the Church is ongoing. We hope you will join us in the manifestation of our Beloved Community by joining us for our Taizé service tonight (Wednesday, November 9 at 7PM), and on Sunday as we gather for Celebration at 10AM.
More than anything, we are grateful to serve as your pastors. We cannot imagine a better congregation with whom to serve.
God’s Peace and Every Blessing,
Ben and Talitha