Grace and peace to you in this blessed season!
If I had written a pastoral note to the churches every time there has been a mass shooting with guns in the United States of America, you would've received a message from me 355 times this year! The numbers are even more staggering for individual instances of gun violence.
When Jesus died a violent death on the cross and God resurrected him it was, in part, a message to all of humanity that violence is unacceptable. Our Advent Hope is the fulfillment of this promise in Jesus' resurrection – that peace will prevail on the earth.
Of course our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone touched by this kind of violence and other forms as well. And our prayers and comfort are not enough! From the Christian perspective we can speak truth to power and we must!
In the spirit of active hope what can your congregation contribute to God's work for peace? There are many resources at hand for our collective action. Lone voices are important and so is the power of community.
Let it be said of the United Church of Christ in Massachusetts that we are willing to shine a light on the problem of gun violence in our communities. Let it be said of us that we recognize prayer without action falls short of God's expectation. Bless you for your efforts and see the links below for connections your community can make.
We invite users of this website to post comments in response to posts published here. In order to maintain a respectful community, we insist that comments be polite, respectful and tolerant of opposing viewpoints. We reserve the right to remove comments that are hostile, hateful or abusive to others, or that constitute personal attacks. In the interest of transparency, we highly recommend that users comment using their full names. For those who feel a need for more anonymity, however, we will allow posts using first names and last initial.