I am responding to the news reports of a shooting at New Gethsemane Church of God in Christ in Richmond on February 14th and its aftermath. “Violence won’t crush us, Richmond’s faithful promise“ was the headline for one article describing a march and rally following the shooting. Bishop J.W. Macklin and others asserted the right of communities and youth to be free from violence and despair: "Never again. Our voice. Our city. Our hope."
My religion, Christian Science, teaches that christliness - expressed as goodness, compassion, humility, justice, courage and so forth – can be tapped by anyone in support of families, neighborhoods, and nations in this time of darkness. Founder Mary Baker Eddy described these qualities as a “…gentle beam of living love and deathless life.” I am wearied by evidence of financial, environmental, educational, and humanitarian disasters and predictions of more to come and discouraged by the rhetoric that would try to undermine the good that President Obama’s presidency represents for our country. Yet I’m encouraged by what people of goodwill can do to lift up individuals and institutions to oppose threats to peace and stability and to spread a message of blessing and hope to those whose lives they touch.