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Letter To The Editor: Courage to Bend toward Justice


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Letter To The Editor

We challenge everyone to live with a bold compassion that will bend the arc of history toward justice.

The attack on the Tree of Life Synagogue demonstrates a shameful rise in anti-Semitism. As local Faith Leaders and Leaders of Conscience, we grieve for our nation.  We mourn the 11 Jews who died in the massacre in Pittsburgh, and many others similarly murdered.

We see hate toward our Jewish, Muslim, Black, Immigrant, and Native neighbors festering through groups like Identity Evropa and the rhetoric of national leaders which incites and radicalizes white supremacists. Their words and actions poison our nation with toxic fear, reinforce racist structures, and dehumanize our fellow citizens.

This fear-based ideology insidiously creeps into our lives, and sometimes into churches. This hate is deadly — literally and spiritually. Its evil voice inculcates fear of neighbor, government, newspapers, universities, and scientists. This fear provokes reasonable people to kill other human beings and bullies citizens to submit to white supremacist ideology.

Take courage. Gain strength, even while we grieve, to be transformed from fear to love, from division to unity, from despair to hope.

Faith Leaders and Leaders of Conscience, Eastern Washington and North Idaho

Gen Heywood
Gen Heywood
Rev. Gen Heywood has been active in parish ministry for more than 30 years. From small towns to big cities, she always lets the needs of the community and the congregation be her guide. Gen credits the supportive leadership of Veradale United Church of Christ for including her work to overcome racism, poverty, the war economy and ecological devastation as part of her ministry. “Veradale UCC is a small church with a powerful faith. They are the reason I can be a witness for a world where we do justice, live with compassion and walk humbly with the Divine.” Gen grew up in rural Maine. She received a B.A. in Music Therapy and German from Emmanuel College in Boston, Massachusetts, and her M.Div. from Andover Newton Theological School in Newton, Massachusetts. She is a lifelong learner who lives in Spokane Valley, Washington, with her three dogs, as well as, sometimes, with her amazing young adult children.

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