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September 2015

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Archie Bunker

From the sermon “Charleston”
given by Jodi on June 21, 2015

…evil is rooted in brokenness and only love can heal and transform that brokenness…Which is why we must refuse a simplistic understanding of love.

What is love?

We’ve borne witness to one of the most powerful forms of love—forgiveness. I imagine I was not the only one of us stunned to watch as one family member of the victims after another forgave the shooter. Love is forgiveness.

But love is also the rage of black Americans—rising up to say no more, to say this is sin, to say stop, to say shame. Rage can be a form of love—yes, even riots can be a form of love—an insistence that something is wrong, and attention must be paid.

And therefore love is white Americans paying attention. Listening before speaking. Refusing to identify each violent attack an “isolated incident” and instead acknowledging the national shame of systemic racism. Love is paying attention.

Love is building community. Stepping towards each other instead of stepping away. Choosing to be vulnerable enough to hear hard truths, to speak hard truths, and allow those truths to transform us.

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