Dear Interweave Community,
It’s hard to believe that less than three weeks ago I was writing to you about the Orlando tragedy, and now another seven lives have been lost due to more tragic violence in our nation. I have been struggling with how to ask our community to once again reflect on the critical state of our world, but how can we not?
The police shootings that resulted in the deaths of Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota were made visible to the nation through social media, bringing issues of racial discrimination and the necessity for a Black Lives Matter movement into sharp focus. It has both shocked and saddened us. The violence that followed in the killing of Dallas police officers Lorne Ahrens, Michael Krol, Michael Smith, Brent Thompson, and Patrick Zamarripa during a peaceful protest in response to these shootings left us stunned as a nation.
Memorials and funerals were held for the five police officers this week. The burial of Philando Castile was held today. Alton Sterling will be buried tomorrow. It’s all too much.
In this environment of fear and distrust, there is a temptation to look away and not talk, reflect, or even think about what has happened. The desire to numb ourselves is palpable. The challenges are too large, too complex, and are seemingly insurmountable. It’s too much to be held alone.
One of the purposes and gifts of community is that we can hold on to each other as we work toward the common good. Transformative communities such as ours need to continue to come together to pray, dialogue, reflect, and work towards healing and peace in our broken world. It is one of the reasons I feel so blessed to be a part of Interweave, a community that understands that we are all part of the human family. As Maya Angelou wrote, “we are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike.”
This is the human family. This is our human family. The loss and grief of Baton Rouge, Falcon Heights, and Dallas is our loss and grief. So let us come together to pray for healing and the strength to work for the love that overcomes fear and for a peace that is shared by all.
And so once again I invite you to walk for peace at our Mendham campus at The Community of St. John the Baptist. Join us this Saturday at 9am for a Morning Vigil at the Labyrinth as we walk for peace and offer our prayers in the wake of these tragedies. If you are unable to attend, please join us through prayer wherever you are.
Blessings and Peace,
Janet Aulet Maulbeck