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The Rev. Dr. Michael W. Waters, who wrote the award-winning “For Beautiful Black Boys Who Believe in a Better World,” published last year by Flyaway Books, brought a pair of show-and-tell items to punctuate his hour-long talk Thursday evening at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, Kentucky.
As protests against racism continued in Oregon and other parts of the country, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s Office of Public Witness held a webinar this week explaining the importance of challenging the status quo and making one’s voice heard through the ballot box.
Fourteen months ago, the Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis was on a bus winding through Western Kentucky on the Poor People’s Campaign’s Real National Emergency bus tour and envisioning a major march of tens of thousands of people in June 2020.
Presbyterians do mission in partnership and the mutual support has been strong as the U.S. fights pandemics on two fronts, COVID-19 and systemic racism.
Below are excerpts of letters, messages, sermons and poems that have been sent to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) They contain messages of love, solidarity and prayer from partners around the world.
Beth Mueller got a note from a man who saw the virtual choir of international peacemakers video she created for the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program and had a question.
“He wanted to know how we got all those people from around the world to sing at the same time on Zoom,” Mueller said, laughing.
On Friday, an independent group of United Nations human rights experts released the sort of statement we are used to seeing about other nations.
The deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd have caused an uproar across the nation and in countries around the world against the oppression and injustice suffered by black Americans as a result of centuries of systemic racism. Floyd, an unarmed black man, was killed May 25 by a Minneapolis police officer who held his knee on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds.
Calling racism “a sin against humanity,” the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Office of Public Witness expressed outrage at the death of George Floyd Friday and called on Presbyterians to take action in the wake of his death.
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Law and order exists for the purpose of establishing justice and when they fail in this purpose, they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress.” Is the current unrest around the country and particularly in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Louisville, Kentucky, a result of decades of law and order failing in its purpose to establish justice?