The Rector's Blog
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February 16, 2017, 12:00 AM

Why there has been a gap in blogging...

I don’t have to tell you that the public sphere has taken a real turn toward ugly – we see it on TV, in the news and in the comedy/talk shows, in the paper, on the Internet, even in conversations with our friends and pretty much everywhere.  It’s like a cork has been removed from an anger volcano and the world is blowing up around us!  We seem to have forgotten how to get along.

Frankly, I have simply been trying to figure out what to say that will help us all cope.  I am mostly stressing the fact that whatever our own differences may be within our own church community: we ARE a community; we ARE the church; we ARE called together to be together and to live and work together as we follow the person and teachings of Jesus Christ.  Together.

Change is always hard, but some change is harder for some, and other change is harder for others.  I think we forgot to listen, somewhere along the line; we as a people got lazy about paying attention to those who are in different circumstances.  We should have paid more attention when the Tea Party started gaining ground, as they voiced distrust and distress.  As a progressive, I must admit that I did not take their complaints kindly.  That’s my bad.

As an historian, I know, at least in theory, that there have always been some deep and bitter divides between and among “demographic groups” – however defined.  Back in the Colonial days, not everyone thought that a revolution was a good idea – it was bad for business!  The merchant class was mostly opposed; many religious leaders with feet in the Church of England were downright horrified.  Any number of folks – including some of my own ancestors – moved to Canada to avoid it.  And that’s just the beginning of the story of our country!

As a scientist, I cringe at the idea that science has become anathema – whether it’s evolution or climate change or plant genetics or vaccines, or whatever.  Science is built on observation, theorizing, testing, and disproving.  But now, we hear that science is biased and wrong.

As a lawyer, I am dismayed that basic Constitutional principles are now disposable – the right of protest, the right to practice, or not, any given religious faith, and the proper roles of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches are all up for grabs.

As a theologian, I am distressed at the idea that the God I love with all my heart is being used as some kind of weapon against political opponents, the poor, the outcast, the alien, and the sick, not to mention people of differing sexual and gender identities and expression, of differing religious beliefs, or of a different race or background.

Over and over we see in the Bible that God appeals to people and rulers alike to stop oppressing the poor and weak, and to start loving God with all they have and are, and their neighbors as themselves.    

This is what I always come back to.  This is my conviction, and it convicts me when I fail.  It comforts me when I feel afflicted, and afflicts me when I feel comfortable. 

As we work on that loving God, loving neighbor thing, let’s start with a concerted effort to look for the good around us – because it is still around us.  Those who have eyes, let them see; those who have ears, let them hear!   I pray blessings for all of you.

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