Act, love, unite to help create the beloved community
As we meander in the holy days in our faith traditions in an impeachment, elections, white-power season of turmoil and division politically, hope seems cold, hollow and impossible! However, there it is each year and all year, springing up and inspiring us to speak out, be resilient, challenge political, economic, racial, gender, age and environmental injustices that seem ever present and ever mounting—as always.
Hope is vigorous.
Hope is sustainable.
Hope is power.
Can injustice, oppression and hate worsen? Of course they can.
Can we intervene as the heart, hands and hunger of God to slow or stop the flow toward more autocracy, oligarchy, inequality and destruction of ecosystems? Working together and speaking out with God's help, of course we can.
When the celebrations and time out for our annual and seasonal holy days is done, when the worship, prayers and reflections of our weekly holy days and daily holy times are over, our work with faith renewed and hope refreshed begins.
When we step out of our sanctuaries, singing, silence and stillness, we return as the incarnation of hope in action to restore, renew, reconcile and refresh our communities, regions, states, nations and the world.
We are not alone. People throughout our communities, regions, states, nations and the world are ready to join hands with us to care for the lonely, to find the missing, to heal the broken, to feed the hungry, to house the homeless, to free prisoners, to welcome strangers, to love neighbors, to rebuild nations, to make peace, to bring justice, to reunite families, to reconcile with enemies, to forgive family, to share stories, to build relationships, to empower people, to love all God's children, to care for creation and to rejoice always.
It's a long list. We don't have to do it all as individuals. We act where we have gifts, trusting that we are part of God's caring community with others who have gifts.
In that note, we celebrate those who support The Fig Tree's sharing stories of people—such as those uplifted in recent issues—and how those people impact lives:
The World Relief community inspires us to welcome refugees.
Presbyterian mission co-workers foster ties with indigenous Guatemalans.
Episcopalians seek to help people find the middle way to carry on conversations.
An African-American classical musician brings cultural diversity to a church.
Environmentalists and civic leaders seek sustainable development in Spokane.
Ecumenical Catholic Communion feels called 'to be Christ for the world.'
Faith leaders challenge white supremacy and environmental injustice.
Church members step just outside their doors into a downtown mission field.
Central America Study and Service Program shatters students' assumptions.
Nun returns to Korea with insights on using English as a global language.
Transitions houses 24 once homeless families in its Home Yard Cottages.
Homeless Connect draws people for one day to one place to resolve many needs.
Financial advisor and Rotary share income to improve lives.
Indigenous women unite to raise awareness and challenge systems so fewer Native women will go missing or be murdered.
These stories of people making a difference, recorded in two issues, inspire us to keep finding ways to "move the needle" and to overcome the "enemy images" that feed politicians seeking to amass total power.
The questions driving our decisions must not be "What's your net worth?" or "What or who does the latest poll say is popular?
They must be "How how do our vision and faith inform how we invest and share what we have?" and "How do we educate, empower and engage people to overcome hate, greed and violence?"
Love, unite and act as the community of faith with all caring people, persisting to create the beloved community.
Mary Stamp - Editor
Copyright@ The Fig Tree, January, 2020