Thursday, October 13, 2011

Occupation to Beloved Community

What absolute brilliance of folks from Catholics United recreating a universally known symbol and galvanizing the religious presence at Occupy Wall Street. The Golden Bull brought representatives from many religions together in universal witness against the greed and hatred experienced today in our society. Christianity, in particular, usually seems to be ignored in movements like this, but not anymore.

We Christians speak of the Beloved Community, and that needs to be our paradigm here so that we may witness for the long haul, and inspire others to do the same. Sustained by prayer, sacrament and Word, we carry on, carrying on. We can do no less.

Part of our witness as those who walk with Jesus, as difficult as it can be, is to remember Christ loves all, even the corporate CEO whining about not getting a raise on his $10 million salary or the politician who sees the occupiers as somehow unpatriotic. Loving those who agree with us is easy; loving those with whom we don't, and seeing that of God within them as people, not so much. But doing anything less renders us false witnesses.

We need to be the Good News! Occupying Wall Street and participating in partner occupations in cities around the country give us the opportunity and place to do so, reaching thousands who'd never darken the door of a church. And we do this by being open vessels, holding ourselves in vulnerability for others, simple presence. We do this by participating in the Cross, laying down our lives for our friends (John 15:12-13).

This movement needs to be about conversion of all our hearts, regardless of religion or non, not merely realignment of assets or defeating candidates. It compels us to make the collective and personal, spiritual, not just political. We need to come together as One with the Beloved and make for compassion and justice.

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