Groceries

We say the danger is CRT.
What about shopping for groceries?
What about denying what we see?
White supremacy.

Father Whiteness says, “You’re being political.”
Lady Wisdom says “You’re being insensible.”
Creator God says, “This is theological.”
White supremacy.

Why all the defensiveness?
Why the lack of pensiveness?
Where is Jesus is all of this?
White supremacy.

White bullets continue to fly.
Black neighbors continue to die.
White obstinance still denies
White supremacy.

Written May 16, 2022, reflecting on the 18 year old man motivated by self-proclaimed white supremacy who shot and killed 10 people in Buffalo, New York, targeting a grocery story in the heart of a predominately Black community.

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Mother’s Peace Day — Original Intent (corrected post)

The following proclamation (1870) was written by Julia Ward Howe. She was the woman who organized for the first “Mother’s Day,” originally called, “Mother’s Peace Day.” Julia was a poet, activist and abolitionist, who was moved to write and organize after witnessing the carnage of civil war. In origin, Mother’s Peace Day was a protest of peace in a world committed to tearing families apart due to war.

In 1907, Anna Jarvis, of Philadelphia, began the campaign to have Mother’s Peace Day become Mother’s Day to be recognized as a national holiday. It was officially recognized in 1914 as “public expression of our love and reverence for all mothers.”

Now it’s about hallmark cards and sentimentality.

But Julia Ward Rowe’s words still speak. Read it. Capture the original spirit of the day.

“Arise, then… women of this day!
Arise, all women who have hearts,
whether our baptism be that of water or of tears!
Say firmly:
We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies.
Our husbands shall not come to us, reeking with carnage,
for caresses and applause.
Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn
all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.
We, women of one country, will be too tender of those of another country
to allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs.

From the bosom of the devastated earth a voice goes up with our own.
It says: Disarm, Disarm!
The sword of murder is not the balance of justice.
Blood does not wipe out dishonor,
nor violence vindicate possession.
As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil
at the summons of war,
let women now leave all that may be left of home
for a great and earnest day of council.

Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.
Let them then solemnly take council with each other as to the means
whereby the great human family can live in peace,
each bearing after his own kind the sacred impress, not of Caesar,
but of God.

In the name of womanhood and of humanity, I earnestly ask
that a general congress of women, without limit of nationality,
may be appointed and held at some place deemed most convenient,
and at the earliest period consistent with its objects,
to promote the alliance of the different nationalities,
the amicable settlement of international questions,
the great and general interests of peace.“

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Re-Visioned 3e Training Lab

We are excited to announce our re-visioned 3e Training Lab. This lab equips participants to mentor neighbors participating in 3e’s Workforce Development Initiative and Sustainability Initiative.

It also equips lab participants to walk with neighbors as they transition from social displacement. Attendees will leave the lab with the tools to answer these questions:

• How does individual and collective trauma impacts all of us?
• What is the social science at work behind poverty?
• How can asset-based collaboration and community development systemically address social displacement?
• How can a robust theology of hospitality guide a faith community through it all?

If you’re interested, join us. Email Justin to reserve a spot (justin@3erestoration.org). Scholarships are available based upon need. Also, if you’ve come to prior to 2019, there is a lot of new content. Pay for your book and lunch and join us.

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The Good News of God’s Welcome

This poem was originally written in 2016. I revised it on Holy Saturday 2022 for Easter Sunday with Williamsburg Christian Church.

Born a child in a manger,
Son of Mary and Son of the great I Am,
Outcast as a stranger,
He extended God’s welcome to every child, woman and man.

Embracing liars and thieves,
Loving the poor and the rich.
Helping those struggling to believe,
Liberating the powerless and sick.

Comforting the lonely and the child,
Forgiving the violent and religious elite,
Healing the immigrant and those left-out.
Welcoming any who would hear and believe.

His message of good news would not be silenced,
Nor his deeds of love contained.
In anger and fear the authorities turned to violence,
To murder the One they could not explain.

God Incarnate and Love enfleshed,
He was condemned with thunderous applause.
Crowned with thorns upon his head,
Willingly killed on the lynching-cross.

His lifeless body placed in a grave,
Marred by the violence of the rebellious fall.
Raised to life by God’s Spirit He defeated sin and death,
As God’s promised King and Cosmic Lord of all.

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The In-Between of Holy Saturday

Canyonlands National Park in Utah

Holy Saturday is about the in-between–remaining stuck somewhere between the tragedy of Friday and triumph of Sunday. We have a difficult time keeping our minds in the in-between. We are too uncomfortable with the tension. We are desperate for resolution.

But life doesn’t always work that way. There are tensions we can’t resolve and questions we can’t answer. There are tragedies we can’t avoid and times when redemption feels impossible. This is why Holy Saturday is good for us, even this side of resurrection. We are invited to wait. Like the disciples we will face the darkness, sit in distress and feel the desperation. We will feel the weight of the tension, the questions, the tragedies and seemingly irredeemable circumstances.

Then, when we least expect it, the sun rises and Sunday comes.

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