October 23, 2020
Dear Lake B Family and Friends,
The letter below is published on the Seattle Presbytery website - www.seapres.org and it is written to the congregations of the Seattle Presbytery from the Executive Board.
Please read and find encouragement in the days ahead:
We know the litany well—Covid 19 is on the rise again, and not going away anytime soon.
The stock market hums along as unemployment climbs to epic highs.
Exhausted parents work at home while trying to keep the kids on track with school, everybody just trying to hold it together.
The long unfinished business of racial justice gnaws at our nation’s soul.
We’re enduring a political season as divisive as our nation has known.
And now an election threatens chaos and violence.
These are overwhelming—and for some, frightening—times. People are anxious, even scared.
In these unprecedented times we humbly urge our Presbyterian siblings to:
Reclaim our ultimate allegiance to the kingdom of God (Jesus’ favorite topic!), which is not a place we go after we die, but a new reality that began long ago. God’s reign begun in Jesus—a kin-dom of peace and justice—turns conventional values upside down (if you want to save your life, lose it; if you want to be first, you must be last).
Make a plan to vote, but as we do so be aware of what can cloud our vision: the lens of American nationalism that too easily conflates the kin-dom of God with our nation, robbing the upside down kin-dom of its counter-cultural power; the lens of whiteness that obscures people of color, distorting the kingdom of God; and, an exclusive fixation on the world to come that obscures the kin-dom’s focus on poverty, oppression, and injustice right now.
Remember real people are in real danger, and scared. As individuals and as congregations let us rededicate ourselves to embody radical hospitality, love of neighbor, and concern for those whom society regards as the least—especially Black and Brown bodies, who are at greater risk and extremely vulnerable to violence during this election and its aftermath.
In this chaotic time, let us make every effort to be the body of Christ and reach out in love.
Grace and peace, dear friends,
Seattle Presbytery Executive Board
Heidi Husted Armstrong Jared Chase
J.P. Kang Dani Forbess
Lina Thompson Brocc Snyder
Jesse Mabanglo Hugo Torres
Leslie Ferrell Loretta Pain
It is easy to be overcome by fear, anxiety as our news feeds fill with divisive rhetoric. I invite us to take deep breaths; to focus on the ways, even simple ways, to serve and to love others in our lives. I hope that we will find strength in the reminder that ALL THINGS belong to God.
May we pray as one to seek wisdom, to work for peace and justice and, in the Spirit of the Lord’s Prayer, carry with us a vision of the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven.
Grace to each of you,