The journey toward Becoming Beloved Community requires a constant “striving towards” our commitment. That “striving for” will be accompanied by continually falling short of our efforts towards striving. During these times, frequent missteps, mistakes, tensions, confusion, conflict, and fear will be encountered and can be leveraged for opportunities of learning and growth.
As a leadership team, our own collective understanding of Becoming Beloved Community is a dynamic and iterative process that requires continual on the ground and distanced perspectives. Our growing understanding of Becoming Beloved Community and it’s focus on race is summarized below:
Because race and its primary goals of separation and control is one of – if not the primary – commonalities that we all share, it offers a way for us to explore, engage in and practice the values and foundation of a Beloved Community. This commonality finds connection to everything – even Creation Care which is also part of the foundation of Becoming Beloved Community. Our fears and subsequent separation constantly pit us against the very things that make this world livable. Our fear even pits us against the very planet that sustains us. Within my entire being, I too dream of a Beloved Community that allows each of us to live into who we are created to be – to live into our full potential – to be liberated. Blocking the path of liberation for us all, simply put, is race – separation and control. Using the truth about race and racism as a lens to explore the Beloved Community sheds light on the reality that no one escapes from racial (or any other type of) oppression – not one of us. Each of us are deeply wounded and in one way or another are blocked from that liberation that I believe we all seek.
Our work then, is not only to be in opposition to the endemic fear, hatred and mistrust that has been a part of everyday life, our work is primarily for us to live into a loving, liberating, and life-giving people engaged in the process of Becoming Beloved Community.
Note: This was shared with the Diocesan Council on June 22, 2019.