Dear friends,

At the recent Democratic National Convention, Rev. William Barber challenged his listeners: “We must be the moral defibrillators of our time: we must

shock this Nation with the power of love. We must shock this Nation with the power of mercy. We must shock this Nation with the power of fighting for justice.” Are you and I moral defibrillators?

This week as we remember Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as moral defibrillators, we might be moved to cry out, “Never again!” As we see police concerned about their own safety, we might be moved to cry out, “Change your attitude of ‘shoot to kill’.” As some cry out, “Black lives matter,” We might add, “All lives matter.” Another way, we are called upon to be moral defibrillators, is in taking care of our Earth. We might feel called upon to remind ourselves and others, like the voice to Moses at the burning bush: “Take off your sandals, you are walking on holy ground.” We are stewards in charge of taking care of our earth. As moral defibrillators, we might feel called to speak out to the Pope and Bishops, “Honor the call of women to priestly ordination and access their talents for ministry in our Church.”
How are you called upon to be a moral defibrillator in your home, in your neighborhood, in our Church, in our country?

For you inspiration, we offer a short quote from Etty Hillesum, another from Gandhi and then a wonderful blessing from Jan Richardson.

Etty Hillesum reminds us, “Each of us moves things in the direction of war each time we fail in love.”

So far as I can see, the atomic bomb has deadened the finest feeling that has sustained humankind for ages…The moral to be legitimately drawn from the supreme tragedy of the bomb is that it will not be destroyed by counter-bombs, even as violence cannot be by counter-violence. Humankind has to be get out of violence only through nonviolence. Hatred can only be overcome by love. Gandhi

Blessing in a Time of Violence
Which is to say
this blessing
is always.
Which is to say
there is no place
this blessing
does not long
to cry out
in lament,
to weep its words
in sorrow,
to scream its lines
in sacred rage.
Which is to say
there is no day
this blessing ceases
to whisper into the ear
of the dying,
the despairing,
the terrified.
Which is to say
there is no moment
this blessing refuses
to sing itself
into the heart
of the hated
and the hateful,
the victim
and the victimizer,
with every last
ounce of hope
it has.
Which is to say
there is none
that can stop it, none that can
halt its course,
none that will
still its cadence,
none that will
delay its rising,
none that can keep it
from springing forth
from the mouths of us
who hope,
from the hands of us
who act,
from the hearts of us
who love,
from the feet of us
who will not cease
our stubborn, aching
marching, marching until this blessing
has spoken
its final word,
until this blessing
has breathed
its benediction
in every place,
in every tongue:
The Wisdom of our God from the voice of — Jan Richardson

At The Spirit of Life, our belief in the sacredness of all created beings and loving relationships compels us to respond with care and compassion to all who are marginalized in our church and world. We invite you to come and to pray with us as we “do our own work” in growing into a deeper awareness of our own gifts and ‘growing edges’ and together create a community that invites diversity and honors the uniqueness of each individual and every journey. We are confident that you will feel welcome in the “home” of The Spirit of Life.

With loving blessings,
Ron & Jean